Video interviews

Are video interviews here to stay?

3 months ago by Claire Smith

​Turn the clock back six months and our clients were just starting to embrace video interviews as a temporary solution for limiting on-site visitors and keeping recruitment going. Then lockdown hit and people were asked to work from home wherever possible, forcing interviewers and candidates to meet each other for the first time via video in their home environments. When people start returning to the office and some kind of normality resumes, will video interviews quickly become a distant Covid memory?

It seems not. Feedback from a number of our clients suggests that video interviews could play a valuable part in the recruitment process for the foreseeable future.

Scott Taviner, HR Director of the Langmead Group, has definitely witnessed the benefits of video interviewing for a growing business. Having previously used telephone interviews for shortlisting candidates, they switched to Zoom interviews as the technology became the ‘new normal’ and quickly identified advantages of the change in dynamic.

Telephone interviews had been sufficient for fact finding about a candidate, but video interviews proved far more effective for getting to know somebody and their likely fit from a cultural/values perspective. The Langmead Group has been using short ‘speed dating’ style video interviews during the pandemic, which give candidates the opportunity to sell themselves rather than just repeating their CV.

The other obvious advantage of video interviewing compared to face-to-face is the amount of time saved. Using the above approach allowed them to carry out four interviews in two hours, something that would have typically taken a full day. As a business, they will continue to use video interviews as part of the recruitment process going forward, however Scott stressed that face-to-face interviews would always be the preference for the final stage.

Video interviews can be quite daunting from a candidate perspective and some have struggled to adapt to the shorter format. This is where setting aside time for a briefing session with your recruiter can really help as they will be able to prepare you for the style of the interview and identify key points for your ‘elevator pitch’.

Skoulikas Bedford is another client that has embraced video interviews and the time-saving benefits that they provide. Managing Director, Paul Garrod, offers these...

Five top tips for maximising their success

1. Put the candidate at ease from the start about any interruptions from the doorbell/pets/children/etc. This will help them to feel more relaxed.

2. There is naturally less small talk over video compared to a face-to-face interview, so keep interviews to 30 minutes maximum and state this in the interview confirmation.

3. Stick to one interviewer where possible as it can get confusing to all involved to have more than one screen to address.

4. Take advantage of having time to see more candidates via video and use them to get a feel for the type of candidate you’re looking for.

5. Video interviews are a great tool for shortlisting, for example reducing five candidates down to three for more thorough face-to-face interviews.

Share your thoughts

​Have you taken part in a video interview during the pandemic? Let us know how you found it and what your thoughts are compared to traditional face-to-face interviews.

Alternatively, if your business is thinking about using video interviews as part of your recruitment process, please do get in touch for advice on how to make them work for you.