Video interviews are here to stay, here's why

Posted on 12 Jul 2021
Video interviews are here to stay, here's why

The benefits of video interviews

One of the positive things to come out of lockdown has been the introduction of video interviews into the recruitment process. Here's why we think they're here to stay...

Ok, so they're not without their challenges, but we think that the positives outweigh the negatives:

1. Increased number of candidate interviews

On the whole video interviews create less work and take less time. Not the interview itself of course, but the arranging, the welcoming, the arrival and sign-in process. There's still a need to coordinate diaries, but with a well-thought-out calendar manager, this can even be automated to save time, leaving more time to see more people. 

2. Time-saving for hiring managers

It is also worth noting that recruiters can interview more candidates by video in any given time frame. That means that internal or external recruiters will be able to screen more applications via video, increasing the quality of candidates who reach the hiring manager, reducing the risk of them interviewing unsuitable candidates. Saving hiring manager's time ultimately affects their efficiency and leaves more space for the strategic aspect of their job.

3. Improve your green credentials

Sustainability is vital to business processes, employers are striving to reduce their negative impact in every way possible – including
recruitment. Video interviews altogether remove the need for candidates to travel to you, meaning either party carries out no flights, train or car journeys.

The pandemic has proved to businesses worldwide that conferences, meetings, and recruiting can operate smoothly via remote communication, this is a tremendous accidental benefit of remote hiring.

4. Higher interview attendance rates

Unless a serious emergency crops up or somebody is taken ill, both parties are far less likely to cancel or miss the interview if they can dial in from anywhere in the world. At the same time, face-to-face interviews are easily derailed by a bad cold, train cancellations, or even a change of heart from a candidate who decides against making the 1 hour trip to your office. The reduced travel and commitment required from candidates and hiring managers means that a higher percentage of interviews are likely to be conducted as planned, once again leaving you with a bigger pool of candidates at the end of the interview round. 

5. Get the right candidates in place faster

With hiring managers keen to get the right candidate in place for their vacancies as quickly as possible, this is by far the most crucial benefit of video interviews for businesses. The culmination of interviewing more candidates, reducing the hiring manager's involvement, and increasing interview attendance rates will lead to a better candidate pool building in a shorter space of time. That will ultimately lead to hiring better candidates faster than competitors can reach them. A further benefit is reduced costs for the business by decreasing the amount of time and resources spent recruiting for each role, it's also better for the planet and saves candidates' time and money.

Technically speaking

So this is where it can all be a little tricky can't it.  Internet connections, dodgy equipment, lack of knowledge, even cats, dogs and kids can add a different dimension to the experience!

More than likely at your end you'll have this sorted. Quality cameras, microphones and lighting are essential, along with a quiet uncluttered space in which to work. You'll have worked out by now what works best for you.

Candidates may not be so fortunate in their surroundings or their equipment so be sure to make allowances for that.  A good idea is to send them a 'how to' guide a week or so in advance of the interview (if time allows) so they can download any software needed and understand how it's going to run.

Use a standard review process

As with face to face interviews, candidates should be subjected to a standard interview process:

  1. A list of requirements for the role with a clear definition for each one
  2. A set of structured interview questions to ask every candidate
  3. A scoring system on which to rate candidates after the interview, define your score accurately beforehand
  4. Take thorough notes for each candidate
  5. Compile your notes and write your first impressions straight away after the video interview

Early-stage interviews

Where video interviews really win is for early-stage screening interviews. They essentially allow for a more detailed screening of candidates without the need for travel or expenditure. By conducting video interviews as the first interview stage, you will hold on to more active candidates and engage them quickly – allowing them less time to be snapped up by competitors or leave the market for other reasons.

Suppose you are planning on leaning solely on the video interview process. In that case, you will likely find that you need more than one stage – an initial video interview screening with the top 3-4 candidates and potentially a second interview for your final two candidates.

Suppose you decide to add a face-to-face interview into the process. In that case, the video interview will be most effective between the CV screening and the physical interview – used to cut the candidate list down and ensure that the hiring manager only meets those most suitable for the role who have passed the early stages.

Review and improve

Be open to the idea of improving your video interview process based on success, issues or challenges presented, and suggestions from staff and candidates. Give your candidates the best chance of success with a streamlined and efficient process designed to support them rather than present them with unnecessary challenges. 

That might mean judging the effectiveness of the video conference software you're using, checking on your standardised process, and asking staff how you could improve the process for them. By focusing on effectiveness, you will identify any issues and continually improve your video hiring strategy.

Video interviews have grown in popularity exponentially thanks to the pandemic and social distancing, and it seems they set to stay for those businesses focussed on bringing in the best recruits without delay. While there is still a place for face-to-face interviews in the recruitment process, with video technology now so advanced and easy to manage, it seems clear that video interviews provide a time-saving and efficient step in an often lengthy and complex process. 

Source document: TalentLyft

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