Video Interviewing: 5 Candidate Red Flags Employers Need To Observe

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Employers must be on the lookout for candidate red flags during a traditional face-to-face job interview but what red flags might be detected during a video interview?  Here is a list of red flags gathered from several human resources professionals.  These warning signs can also be uncovered earlier in the hiring process by way of a video interview.

Doesn’t know the company: Your video interview, whether live or virtual, should contain questions which expose the candidate’s knowledge of your company or products.  A candidate should have an red flagadequate understanding of your product/service and your company.  Via video you will be able to identify earlier in the process whether a candidate is passionate about the position or just a pretender.

Speaks ill of past colleagues: As a recruiter or hiring manager, I’m sure you love candidates who bad mouth their previous boss or colleagues.  “Why are you leaving your current job?” or “Why did you leave the job?” are questions that often reveal how a candidate feels about his past co-workers.  Candidates who express negative opinions about their previous employers are potentially demonstrating an inability to work well with others.

Poor body language: Read my last post about the relationship between body language and the potential for success to better understand the importance of this red flag.  Virtual interviews don’t allow you to size up a candidate as they stroll into your office but much information can still be gathered about a candidate’s demeanor while observing them from the waist up.  Are they slouching?  Are they distracted?  Are they confused?  Are they disinterested or annoyed with your questions?  The camera reveals all.

Poor appearance: Video interviews are not conducted with movie quality cameras and sure candidates may not always be properly lit, but you will know immediately who has made the effort to look their best and who is winging it.  A few candidates will make no attempt to tidy up their back ground or even dress appropriately which will distract those reviewing the recorded interview.  If they don’t treat your video interview professionally you may want to spend more time reviewing the candidates who do.

In it only for the money: If you ask a candidate, “Why do you want to work for our company?” they may, in addition to bad mouthing their prior management, discuss the attractiveness of your potential salary.  A candidate that addresses salary too early in the interview process may be interested only about what your company can offer them and not what they can offer your company.

BONUS red flag, Swearing: I’ve never seen anyone swear on camera but once a candidate exclaimed “crap” as she shoved away her cat who was insistent upon sharing the spotlight with her.  Crap is mild and I doubt the hiring company penalized her but regardless, maintaining professionalism throughout despite interruptions is a sign of poise and maturity.  Swearing isn’t a deal breaker and though it may be human, it isn’t professional.

All of these warning signs can be detected during the face to face interview but do you want to commit the time it takes to setup and conduct a live interview to watching them run red flags up the flagpole?  Use video interviewing as your early warning red flag detector.

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