The pandemic has changed so much of the recruitment landscape since we first went into lockdown just over 16 months ago. One of those areas in particular, has been the interview process.
Since the pandemic started, in-person interviews have been few and far between, or at some points completely non-existent, as the public were requested to limit their contact with people as much as possible to combat the spread of Covid-19. However, employers have still had vacancies they needed to fill throughout this time. This is where video interview practises came to save the day.
What was once just a nice thing to have for the recruitment process suddenly became an absolute necessity for businesses to keep moving in between lockdowns, with many new hires throughout the past year likely to have been hired after a virtual interviewing process.
As restrictions have eased, in-person interviews have gradually returned as a fixture in the recruitment process. However, this doesn’t mean companies are now choosing to forego video interviews in their recruitment process entirely. In fact, research by job site, Indeed, has revealed that the shift to virtual hiring is now accelerating rather than slowing.
Even out of lockdown, video interviews can still have amazing benefits for employers, particularly in the early stages of the interview process. If you’re unsure of what these benefits can be, here is just a small handful of examples of long-term benefits to video interviews.
Streamlines the screening process
Using video interviews can save time at any stage of the recruitment process but can particularly save time at the screening stage.
Instead of spending hours making calls to candidates who look good on their CV, automated invitations for a pre-recorded video interview can be sent out, allowing candidates to answer a few screening questions in their own time. Recruiters can then eliminate candidates who are not a strong match earlier on and move forward to more thorough interviews with only selected candidates that appear to be a good match.
By using video interviews in the screening process, it will ultimately reduce the time required and eliminate any scheduling complications, meaning not only can the candidate answer the questions in their own time, but the recruiter can view them in their own time too.
While this method of screening is useful for any vacancy, its benefits really show with vacancies that have a high volume of applications. It’s likely you could double the number of screening interviews conducted in a day simply by using video interviews.
Keeps the talent pool as open as possible
Video interviews offer a way for recruiters and hiring managers to be able to quickly compare different candidates without creating any delays to the hiring schedule. The use of video interviewing mitigates scheduling complications and delays, they also reduce the risk of losing talented candidates to faster-moving companies, ensuring you are maintaining a healthy talent pool filled with top talent.
The traditional in-person interviews can also be challenging for those passive candidates who are currently employed. The use of pre-recorded video interviews in the interviewing process builds a pace for these passive candidates and can alleviate the stress that can come with scheduling many early-stage interviews around a current job, allowing them to proceed with the job hunt on their terms. This allows the candidate to submit a video interview at a time that is best for them, this process also allows these candidates to keep their job search confidential if they feel it is necessary for them to do so.
Now restrictions are easing, companies are still considering what their workplace model will look like in the coming months and in future years after the changes the pandemic brought in. Whether it is full remote working, a hybrid model, or a full return to the office, video interviewing can support recruiting in all three of these scenarios. This gives recruiters the ability to source their candidates from anywhere, thus widening the talent pool.
Prevents unconscious bias
Setting up a structured pre-recorded interview process also enables recruiters to treat candidates the same, preventing any potential unconscious bias that could occur. This is crucial during the interview process, as it is where the chance of unconscious bias happening increases.
Traditional in-person interviews can have little structure to them, with interviewers following their line of thinking at the time rather than following a series of set questions. This can then create disparity among interviews with different candidates and can sometimes lead to unconscious bias taking place.
Implementing pre-recorded video interviews ensures that each individual interview will be in the same format, with the same questions being asked. This ensures consistency within the interview process with all candidates receiving the same experience and minimizes the risk of unconscious bias and every candidate is given an equal opportunity.
Get a better view of candidates
CVs are static documents that don’t give recruiters or hiring managers much more than a list of qualifications, skills and experience. With candidates encouraged to keep their CVs as short as possible for easy viewing, it can be hard for them to get their full personas across in such a short document.
Video interviews can be used to compliment a candidate’s CV, while taking away the pressure that comes with in-person meetings for both the candidate and the interviewer. It also gives the candidate the opportunity to showcase their personality, allowing them to differentiate themselves from other candidates and show recruiters just how good a fit they’d be for the job and the company as a person, rather than just their skillset.
A video interview can also allow the candidates to highlight areas of their CV in more detail than they are likely to be able to fit into the document itself. For example, they can explain more on how they have implemented their listed skills, what their job titles were versus the work they completed and even explain reasons for leaving past employers and so on.
If the video interview is pre-recorded, the recruiter can also allow candidates the opportunity to re-record their answers until they are satisfied with it. This gives the candidates the chance to carefully consider the questions they are being asked and adequately prepare for these answers, ensuring they are presenting themselves in the best light possible. Don’t forget with this format of interview the candidates cannot converse with the interviewer to ask questions or clarify their answers, so giving them the option to re-do answers takes away some of the stress and pressure that can come with this format and help them put their best self forward.
Improves employer branding
Employer branding is extremely important when it comes to attracting top tier candidates. To improve employer branding, having a positive candidate experience is crucial.
Simply offering candidates the opportunity to conduct a video interview can give an employer a competitive advantage. Recruiting is marketing after all, so being able to show off some technical expertise is always a big plus, especially with younger generations, who are interested in their potential employers having the latest technology.
The majority of good and talented applicants will appreciate being given the chance to really showcase themselves and why they’re the right person for the job. However, being sensitive to the candidate’s time by making the process simple and convenient but still personal will show employers in the best light, too.
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