Video Interviewing’s Hidden Benefit: Destroying Prejudices
I will skip over the standard praise for video interviewing (faster, cheaper, more revealing) that dominates the majority of the posts about the subject and get right into a secret power video interviewing has that is beneficial to both employers and candidates. Video interviewing can destroy our preconceived notions of a job candidate and that’s good for everyone involved in the hiring process.
To better understand how video interviewing accomplishes this we must first understand the preconceived notions we have that often unfairly affect our opinions of others and hurt job seekers’ chances.
According to a study, job candidates with white sounding names are 50% more likely to get job call backs than blacks. What preconceived notions do we have about African Americans that influence our willingness to give them jobs?
A new social media recruiting study shows that 55% of recruiters have reconsidered job candidates based on their social media profiles. Recruiters were negatively influenced by illegal drug references, profanity and sexual posts. I suggest this is fair, however they were also negatively affected by spelling/grammar issues and guns and alcohol. If you read my last post you will see that our opinions of people are negatively swayed if we see them even holding a beer or glass of wine, a prejudice known as the “imbibing idiot” bias. Additionally our opinions are soured by tattoos, especially on women, and body art is certainly something we can often discover from viewing a job candidate’s social profile. Yes, though Linkedin is the social tool most often used by recruiters and is not the network most likely to reveal a job candidate’s tattoo, 66% of employers responded that they also view candidates on Facebook. As you know, Facebook reveals the non-professional side of many to a great extent.
In the past the idea of spending thirty to forty minutes of our or the hiring manager’s time interviewing such ruffians may have felt like a waste of energy and resources. Now with video interviewing, our schedule and resources needn’t be jeopardized because the recorded video interview can be viewed quickly and when convenient. The unseen benefit is that you now have the chance, with little hindrance to your schedule, to see if Mr. 50 caliber is really a gun nut, or a professional business person who just happens to be a gun enthusiast. Yes, Suzy Candidate is drinking a margarita on a sail boat, but does that really mean she’s stupid and has nothing to contribute to your business? And sure, Jamal Tyson may very well be an African-American, but that doesn’t suggest he can’t dominate in his position. Whatever subconscious bias we may have towards race, age, or ethnicity could be vanquished by watching a video interview at minimal risk to our time.
How many good candidates, game changing candidates, have you lost because your pre-conceived notions about a candidate based on their appearance, name, or social media activity persuaded you not to risk your time on them? In the current war for talent we can surely risk wasting a few minutes watching a bad video interview but we have no time to be judgmental or hypocritical.