3 Reasons To Conduct Video Interviews Before Hiring

Video interviews are becoming an essential part of the hiring process and are even used for promotion and development. With globalization and increasingly mobile candidates, video interviews are one more tool for recruiters and recruitment organizations.

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At one time, phone interviews were all we had, but they don’t give you a chance to see candidates. Video interviews allow you to reach prospects anywhere in the world and to see behaviour that isn’t visible by phone. So it’s no surprise that video interviews are on the rise. There is increasing competition for this type of product, and major international players are starting to stake out their territory. Here are three reasons I suggest conducting video interviews before hiring.

1. Being able to see non-verbal behaviour

The first reason for conducting a video interview before hiring a new employee is the tremendous advantage of being able to see the candidate. Phone interviews don’t reveal candidates’ non-verbal behaviour. Yet 90% of communication is non-verbal, so without video interviews, recruiters are depriving themselves of crucial information.

A few months ago, I was recruiting for D-Teck. We didn’t yet have access to video interviews. We decided to use phone pre-interviews. After the pre-interviews, we selected four finalists and had them do psychometric tests. A few days later, I met the finalists in person. One of them didn’t fit with D-Teck values at all. In the first few minutes – even the first few seconds – it became clear that the candidate wouldn’t be hired. Out of respect for the person, who had driven over an hour, we went ahead with the full interview. But we wasted almost an hour of our time, and the candidate’s too. If we had done a video interview, we could have stopped the recording after just a few minutes and moved on to another candidate. In short, the chance to see and observe candidates’ non-verbal behaviour before a more official, in-person interview is the first reason to use video interviews.

2. Projecting an image of innovation

The second reason for doing video interviews is the organization’s brand image. In a world where video is booming, using it is a clear advantage for employers interested in millennials.

Generation Y candidates grew up with computers and have seen the rise of social media, and most of them received cell phones as a gift when they were just 10 years old! They communicate through FaceTimeand Skypeand play online with friends around the world. So you can imagine how these candidates react when they are asked to do a phone interview. Organizations that use phone interviews clearly don’t impress them.

We tend to forget that the hiring process says a great deal about our organization. If the hiring process doesn’t tap into new technology, chances are good that the organization doesn’t either.

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3. Improving efficiency and saving time

The final reason for doing video interviews is the incredible time savings. Imagine: you go through a pile of CVs for a job you posted about 10 days ago. Your internal client is leaning on you. He is texting you regularly for news about how the process is going. The posting period is officially over. It’s Friday and you have flipped through the dozens of CVs received. Before the dawn of video interviews, you would have tried to call the seven or eight promising candidates. If you are lucky, you might reach two or three of them. You would schedule a phone pre-interview for the following week with the ones you reach. Of the candidates you don’t reach but leave a message for, probably half of them will call you back the following Monday or Tuesday, as luck would have it, when you aren’t available. So you play phone tag with them. Eventually, after reaching the top three or four candidates, you schedule interviews toward the end of the week or the beginning of the next week. And to make matters worse, the two candidates with the perfect CVs are no longer be available, because they received another job offer.

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With video interviews, it could be a completely different story. On Friday, after identifying your seven or eight promising candidates, you can take a few minutes to send them your video interview by email. Candidates are impressed by your speed and set aside an hour over the weekend to answer your questions. Your curiosity gets the better of you, and you watch the videos while drinking your Sunday morning coffee. Two candidates clearly stand out. So you text your internal client, asking him to watch the videos and sign off on moving on to the next step: the in-person interview. You get his go-ahead. First thing Monday morning, you contact the two finalists to plan the next step. You have cut close to ten days out of the process. Time savings is clearly the third reason for using video interviews.

 In a business world where talent is scarce, reacting quickly to attract top candidates is crucial. And beyond a fast response, using leading-edge technology makes a good impression and gives you an edge that increases your appeal with the top candidates. Video interviews should part of the recruiter’s tool box, because they give you one more chance to stand out. So, would you consider it?

About Martin Cloutier, Co-Founder, Business Leader & Organizational Psychologist
As President of D-Teck, Mr. Cloutier sets the company vision and coordinates its execution. He is the cofounder of D-Teck, and his mission is to reinvent online psychometric tests. An organizational psychologist by training, his approach combines artificial intelligence with organizational psychology to help clients make better decisions about hiring, promotions and development.