The HR technology revolution continues unabated, with seemingly endless possibilities available to digitalise processes and enable the harnessing of data to improve the functionality of HR business partners. Whilst everyone is preoccupied with trying to stay ahead of the game with the next development such as AI and big data, one area that is quietly emerging is video interviewing. Jumping on GoToMeeting or Skype for a quick meeting or conference call is second nature, so it may not have been abundantly obvious that there has been room for development in video interviewing.
Video interviewing software is different from standard video conferencing software because it is integrated into human capital management (HCM) or application tracking system (ATS) software. This enables the interviews to be seamlessly undertaken, processed and recorded as part of the overall recruitment workflow. As most companies will have some sort of HCM/ATS in place, or use a recruitment partner that does, it stands to reason that a number of video interviewing solutions have entered the market offering increasingly sophisticated ways to enhance processes and procedures.
So how does it work?
Video interviewing does exactly as you’d expect in terms of recording an interview, but it has also enabled automation of the early screening rounds. It enables candidates to be screened more efficiently than over the telephone, predominantly due to the time saved by automating the scheduling of screening interviews and allowing candidates to record and upload at their leisure. Hiring managers or recruiters can then utilise time more efficiently, by skipping through clearly unsuitable candidates or watching a series of interviews back to back and simultaneously share comments with their teams. These platforms allow individuals to provide feedback based on the video and not just the notes from a telephone interview conducted by one individual, often meaning the chances of a successful hire are greater as more people are involved earlier in the decision-making process.
There are many other reasons video interviewing is quickly becoming part of the recruitment ecosystem. Geographical boundaries can be transcended, widening the talent pool and reducing the chance of candidates not progressing simply because of travel barriers. Passive candidates are more likely to be responsive to an approach if they do not have to sacrifice any of their work day and have the option of producing a video in their own time. Perhaps the most attractive advantages are the cost and time savings for hiring firms, which are clearly evident.
It is unlikely to replace face to face interviewing at the later stages, but if everyone involved in a project can be sure they are only allocating time to meet those with the highest potential, then it is a valuable tool.
What are the limitations?
There are a few drawbacks, notably it is reliant on candidates having access to the technology to complete the task, as well as a minimum level of technological knowledge. In most cases this is not a problem, but in some roles where technology is not a dominant prerequisite it could prove unfair. It can also be slightly daunting for a candidate. Nerves are par for the course in an interview, but without the comfort of a skilled interviewer in front of them, many may not relax at all, and will not present their best side or be able to adequately articulate their skills and experience.
It is clear that the advantages of video interviewing and screening are compelling. As HR technology continues to rapidly advance, it is just another element of the constantly evolving hiring landscape that HR professionals, recruiters and candidates need to embrace.