Since I started working from home I am in love with video conferencing. Typically I use it for meetings but recently I decided to use it for interviewing because I wanted to gauge how comfortable candidates are with the technology and to see if it was any better than the traditional phone interview.
Video interviews are pretty similar to phone interviews but the video interview is sometimes better because it is easier to make a personal connection. Video interviewing also forces you to pay 100% attention to the person you are speaking with. This can be good or bad depending on how interesting the person is.
Because video interviewing may be new to some of you I have some tips/tricks for both HR pro’s and candidates. Peruse the lists and let me know in the comments if you have any suggestions/comments.
- Treat a video interview like an in-person interview. This means:
- No phones ringing or buzzing
- Dress professionally
- Find a quiet place to talk with no distractions. Same with a phone interview: door shut and TV off.
- Test your computer/tablet/phone setup. The software I use incudes instructions on the invite to test the software on your computer before the meeting time. You may also want to test your internet connection to see if it can handle an HD video stream. You can do this by doing a test video chat with Google hangouts or on Skype.
- Speak directly to the camera. It can be difficult to focus during a video interview because there are a couple screens up at the same time. Don’t worry about how you look, just focus on talking to the camera.
For HR Pro’s:
- Start out slow. There are a ton of great products that can help you with your video interviewing needs. But I suggest you start out slow with a low – cost tool. For some companies video interviewing might not be a fit. And that’s okay. Better to find that out after a couple of free skype interviews than after you’ve spent thousands setting up a third party vendor that no one uses.
- Be patient – video interviewing is still a new concept for some. Be ready to answer candidate questions that may be of a somewhat technical nature (example: Can I do this interview from my phone?). Make sure you send an email with instructions and technical requirements.
- Talk to your IT Group – Many companies already have some kind of video software through Microsoft Office or vendors such as Green Job Interview. Before you buy a new program or set up an interview, find out if there are any restrictions on the software at your company (some company’s block skype (or similar products) because of bandwidth concerns.
Which is better? Video or phone? I preferred the video interview when the candidate and I had a great internet connection. A good internet connection is very important to ensure a smooth conversation. If the internet connection is suspect I suggest sticking with the phone interview.
What do you think? Have you conducted video interviews before? Are they better than phone interviews? Hit me up in the comments with your thoughts!