As a search professional I am commonly asked by others in the industry, “How do you use video interviewing in your search assignments?”
Before I get to how, let me tell you why I use video interviewing in my search assignments. I use it to help the hiring manager and other decision makers save time by not meeting with candidates they would otherwise reject within the first five minutes of meeting them face to face. Saving my clients’ time and allowing them to make more informed hiring decisions repeatedly makes them happy. Happy customers keep coming back.
So, how do I sell my candidates using video?
First, I invite the qualified candidates to take a virtual one-way video interview. There are two versions of the one-way video interview. The first doesn’t allow the candidates to see the questions in advance and only gives them one chance to answer the questions, much like a face-to-face interview. The second version gives the candidates the questions in advance, and then allows them to re-do their answers until they are satisfied. It’s no wonder this version is called “showcase”. I almost always use the first version.
I set up the interview and send the candidate an invitation by email. The candidate logs in and on their screen appears a series of questions related to the job to which they are applying. I have put together the set of questions in advance, often with client input. The candidate’s webcam and microphone record his or her responses. I receive an email notifying me once the candidate has completed the video interview. After reviewing the interview, I decide if I’m going to share it with the hiring manager or not. I can even decide which questions & answers I’d like to present to the client. The easiest way to share it is to send a link to the candidate’s recorded interview to the hiring manager for review.
I may choose to use the “showcase” style video interview if I have an enthusiastic, personable, and well-qualified candidate who either just isn’t good at interviewing or is thrown off his or her game by taking an online interview. I have found that this strategy not only makes my candidates happy but makes me happy as well. I can now sit down with the hiring manager, review the candidate’s interview and convince them that, although this candidate is bad at interviewing, they are certainly a skilled candidate who is likeable and knows their stuff.
Another option I use to counter the blank “deer in headlights” stare that candidates occasionally present when faced down by a web camera is to conduct a live video interview. Similar to the one-way interview, the live two-way interview allows me to interview the candidate in real time and record the interview. Some candidates are just more comfortable interacting with a human and in these instances live video interviewing helps them feel more at ease.
Lastly, as you know, you are on the front lines with the candidates. You email them, you talk to them and you laugh with them. You understand better than your client when you have a winner. Sometimes your client might even be “overly selective”. One really effective use of video interviewing is to save a candidate who doesn’t quite meet all the strict job requirements set by the employer. In the past several months we have had two instances where a previously rejected candidate’s chances were revived by video. In both instances the candidate ended up getting hired!
As you can see, video interviewing has not only enhanced my service offering but also screened in candidates my clients might have missed out on. That’s why I roll with video interviews!