The Evolution of the interview
Many of you may have seen news of companies going down the virtual interview route such as LinkedIn changing their interviews to operate over BlueJean or waiting to reschedule them at a later date. This is a new platform for many but we think you’ll quickly grow to love it. One of the big advantages for companies and applicants alike is the time-saving aspect that an online interview offers.
This is a fantastic way to continue with your recruitment drive but it does require preparation and running through a quick check-list to make sure you don’t hit glitches especially if this is new to you.
Before you start the first consideration is:
Choosing your platform
- Have you already moved to a VoIP telephone system? If so you may already have an online meeting / conferencing option available to you that you can give a try or speak to your I.T. Department to get to know it better.
- If you don’t have this option…Most online meeting sites (e.g. Zoom, GoToMeeting) offer a free trial – take advantage of this and try it out with another colleague from both the interviewer and interviewee point of view before you purchase. It’s a great way to get to know the tools available to both you and the person you will interview.
- Ease of use is important, this is a tool that you want to be straight-forward and user-friendly to the point that it is obvious how to perform X/Y or Z. Make this a major consideration when choosing your supplier especially if you don’t consider yourself tech-savvy (you may need to point the interviewee in the right direction if things don’t go as smoothly as you have prepared)
- Can you customise it with your own company branding, not entirely necessary but a nice touch
- Alternatively, if you are using a recruitment company do they offer this facility? (many do)
Holding the interview
- Even though this is online you are going to want to aim to find a quiet spot (we know this can be difficult at present but best not to attempt it in a room where other people are or the TV is on etc if possible)
- Check your setup and try out the interview platform before-hand, if there is an issue with your Internet connection or kit you may need to consider a quick change to a telephone interview but if you test it out beforehand you will have plenty of time to pre-warn the interviewee and change your mind-set to a telephone based interview style.
- Check your internet connection
- Check you have audio
- Check you have video
- Check you have power to all of your kit if needed
- Check what is visible in the shot that your interviewee will see and adjust accordingly
- Check your seating position / if you need to adjust the height of your camera so that you have good posture
Be understanding - Just as you may be struggling to find a quiet spot the interviewee probably is too. If someone/something (e.g. child/dog) comes into focus / sound bear in mind that everyone is in the same position at the moment and try to reassure them if needed. See this as a positive, you are more likely to get a better feel for who the interviewee is as a person.
Remain professional – both parties are likely to be at home with multiple distractions and still getting used to the massive shift in work/home life and those two living symbiotically but we must be careful not to make this too casual it is still an interview.
Dress just as you would in a face to face interview
Ask questions as you would in a face to face interview
It may seem daunting at first but once you’ve tried it the face-to-face interview may even become a thing of the past for you
Good luck and stay safe.
Writen by: Helen Watson on 2020-03-30
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