Video interviews have become the norm in recruitment and it looks like they’re here to stay. That’s not to say face to face interviews and on-site assessment tests are no longer important in the selection process. Most employers adopt a hybrid approach and, for senior roles in particular, will value an opportunity to sit down in person with their top candidates.
Online interviews are a time saver for both candidate and employer. They are popular with candidates for a few reasons:
· There’s the obvious benefit of avoiding a commute and the stress of finding a public transport route or somewhere to park. This is seen as a particular benefit early in the selection process when candidates may be attending multiple interviews with different companies.
· It can feel less daunting to face a virtual interview panel when you are in your own surroundings, compared with sitting in an employer’s reception area waiting to be called in.
· The interviewer can only see the candidate’s head and shoulders, which means it’s feasible to have notes and prompts attached to the edge of the screen should you need them.
· Interestingly, research has shown that the biggest reason candidates give for preferring video interviews is because they see it as progressive and they want to work for companies that are forward-thinking. This is an important consideration for any company looking to hire.
Employers seem to agree with candidates on the value of video interviews. Research from Indeed shows that 77% of employers believe that video interviews provide a better candidate experience. They also feel it is just as effective when it comes to finding great talent. What’s more, it makes it easier for employers to arrange a series of “interviews” or meetings with different members of their team. This can validate their decision making when they’re bringing someone new into the business and engage more people in the hiring process.
Most virtual interviews are simply arranged as a Teams meeting or other video call. The participants meet in real time and the questioning follows the same pattern as any other interview. When preparing for a virtual interview of this kind, it is important to treat it just as you would a face-to-face interview:
· Arrive on time
· Dress smartly
· Prepare well
· Research the company
· Make sure there is nothing in your surroundings to distract you or the interviewer
· Check your audio and camera quality before starting
You may also be invited to attend a pre-recorded video interview. This is less common and you will be made aware in advance if this is the kind of interview you’ll be facing. How it tends to work is that you’ll be prompted on an automated platform to answer a series of questions. For each question you will be asked to record your response and submit it. This method is most likely to be used very early in the selection process.To succeed in this kind of interview, keep in mind that it is still an interview, even though the interviewer is not present. That means doing all the things we’ve mentioned above and acting professionally at all times. People tend to feel a lot more self-conscious with this kind of approach and it can feel like a rather unnatural process. Preparing well, perhaps by practising in front of a mirror or by using the record function on your phone, will help you present yourself in a relaxed and friendly way.
We’ve recently updated a couple of our most popular blogs on the topic of online interviews. You can read them here: