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Video Interviews Can Be Valuable

Has your company embraced online face-to-face job interviews or are you still conducting these interviews in-person?  Check out this infographic produced by PGI– if you’re not using video to interview candidates, you may be part of the minority.  According to the infographic, 60% of HR managers are using video to interview candidates and 66% of candidates actually prefer it that way.

Eagle's Virtual Recruiter service

Comments from last month’s Virtual Recruiter Quick Poll, sent to managers across Canada, suggested that companies are starting to see the convenience and cost-savings in video interviews. The poll did reveal, however, that nobody actually believes video interviews will ever replace in-person interviews (33% of respondents did say maybe).

While video interviews definitely haven’t replaced in-person interviews at Eagle, we have been leveraging them for a few years now to screen candidates.  Here are some of the benefits:

  • It eliminates unnecessary travel.  Our job board brings in applicants from across the country.  Rather than asking out-of-town candidates to travel to a specific office, they can easily have a face-to-face conversation with recruiters from their own home-office or from an Eagle office more local to them.

  • It’s still personal. The alternative to a video interview when a candidate is out-of-town is a phone interview.  These are great for a quick screen that creates a shortlist of candidates, but nothing lets a recruiter get to know a candidate like a face-to-face conversation.

  • It’s flexible.  Even for local candidates, an in-person interview during regular business hours isn’t always possible. What if a candidate is working a full-time job and can’t get away for the interview?  What if the recruiter has a busy schedule with no time for an in-depth, quality conversation? Video interviews allow the recruiter and candidate to find a time and location that suits them.

  • It allows for more innovative interviews and evaluations.  Some companies record video interviews so they can go back and compare candidate responses to specific questions. Other companies implement flexible one-way interviews, where the recruiter sends each candidate the same list of questions, and the candidate returns a video response of the answers, on their own time.

Recruiter looking at PC screen while interviewing candidate remotely

If video interviews are still new to you, here are some tips (for both interviewers and candidates) to get you started:

  • Test it first.  If you’re using a new camera or technology that’s new to you, play around with it first.  Try a call with some colleagues and make sure the sound and camera quality is optimized.

  • Treat it like a regular face-to-face interview.  Come prepared, take notes, and dress professionally.

  • Be conscious of your surroundings.

    Set-up in a quiet, professional-looking space. For example, if you’re at home, turn off the television and separate yourself from kids or pets.

  • Look at the camera.  This takes practice.  Eye contact is important in any interview and the only way to make eye contact with the person you’re talking to is to look into the camera.  Very often we want to look at the person on the screen, but, as you may know, this can look awkward.  Here’s a trick: put a picture of somebody beside the camera and try to look that person in the eyes.

  • Get started!  Video interviews are cheap and easy to set-up so stop using those excuses for not doing it.  All you need is a web cam and a Skype account.

So, are you using video interviews?  If not, what’s stopping you? Do you think video interviews will replace the in-person interview?