Part 1
Part 2

Now you know why you need to be using video interviews, and the common problems you should plan ahead for, the next step is to find out how exactly to conduct a video interview.

As a completely distributed recruitment company, Recognition One has direct first-hand knowledge on making remote hiring as efficient as possible. Our end-to-end guide covers every step from before to after the interview, and will give you the tools you need to make sure you make the right hire every time. 

Pre-Interview

Success in a video interview starts well before the interview actually begins.
In terms of your communication with the candidate, make sure to share as much information as possible before the interview.

Beyond agreeing on a schedule, participants and platform, we have found that you will gain more desirable outcomes by sharing a full agenda of the interview ahead of time. This makes the candidate feel more comfortable in what might otherwise be an unfamiliar process so that they can truly do justice to their career. It also has the twin benefit of holding recruiters accountable to a standardised set of evaluation across the board.

Make sure to include information like:
– The reasons for recording and storing the video
– The technology to be used
– The ground rules for things like dropped connections or asking questions when there is a lag
– Appropriate dress code and background shots
– The plan b for if the technology fails

If you are taking part in a panel interview, there will be some extra steps to take.

Make sure to include additional information like:
– Rules for ad-hoc and follow up questions
– Best-practices for panellists speaking too quickly, or intervening too fast with follow-up questions.
– Who will take the lead at which stages of the interview

Beginning of the call

Without the explicit opportunity for social ice-breakers and small talk, a video interview can turn into an intense session where both parties are ready to go from minute one. Take the beginning of the interview as an opportunity to go over the agenda covered in the pre-interview email, as well as making introductions to put the candidate at ease. If multiple people will be on the call, explain what will happen during the gap until all participants are online.

During the call

The important thing here is to stick to the structure explained at the beginning of the call. As far as the agenda is concerned, a one-way pre-screening interview should be short and straight to the point. As a replacement for a phone screening, you need to make sure your list of questions are relevant to the role and that you’re collecting the feedback that you know ahead of time will add value to your process.

In a two-way or panel interview, follow a list of questions that guide the discussion. This has the benefit of making comparisons easier, streamlining selections processes and reducing unconscious bias.

Throughout the experience, there are also a variety of practices to keep in mind:
– Try to focus on your camera as much as possible and avoid looking at notes in order to simulate eye-contact with the candidate and build rapport. Move the application window to the top of your screen near your camera to help with this.
– Keep in mind that the candidate might not have heard or understood a question, or had time to answer properly, and adjust your responses accordingly.
– In a panel interview, make sure everyone is assessing the candidate according to a common score card to make comparisons and debates on interpretation easier.

 

End of the interview

With reduced opportunity for small-talk and no chance of the candidate having experienced the culture of your office, it is essential to dedicate the end of the call to exploring the questions of the candidate. To avoid the costs of hiring a bad fit, you need to be sure that the candidate had valuable insight into the culture of your organisation.

– Include candidate questions in the original agenda
– Make sure no questions have been left unanswered
– Schedule a follow-up call if necessary

Review and improve

Tech companies should already be aware of the benefits of conducting  post-mortems for addressing failure. Their recruitment polices should be no different. Depending on the resources and time available, you should aim to be reviewing in intervals that could range from after each round to each eventual hiring cycle. Re-watch the videos, assess the performance of the interviewer(s) and then analyse it against the end-result. Video interviews provide a great resource in deciding which traits or actions need to be replicated or avoided in the future.

Conclusion

When done right, video interviewing extends business benefits that go beyond the current crisis. Recognition One has direct experience in making remote hiring as smooth as possible having been working as a completely distributed workforce for over 7 years. Download our guide on the benefits, challenges and best-practices for video interviewing, or contact us to find out how to apply it to you talent acquisition strategy.

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