Video Interviews and Live Interviews Comparison (with a fictitious case study)

The implementation of a remote workforce emphasises the necessity of technology…It’s a scary thought that the fictional movie “The Matrix” is now our reality. This surge of remote working has permanently changed the workforce, globally. 

Globalisation hugely benefited individuals with superior shopping abilities, and now remote working will offer superior opportunities and remove limitations in progressing a career. An employee can work for a company in another city, state, or even country. This is mutually advantageous for employees and businesses. 

Alongside the benefits of remote working, comes many new practices and protocols. 

One of these new protocols, inline with recruitment, is video interviews.

Video interview technology will revolutionise your recruitment process. Whilst this is the latest recruitment craze, there’s great misconception about video interviews and live interviews. To clear this misconception lets look at a fictitious case study. 

So- Video Interviews and Live Interviews. What’s the difference?

Live interviews are conducted in real time. They usually take place over connecting platforms such as Zoom, Google Meets, Skype etc. Video interviews are a bit different… they’re a compilation of pre-recorded video answers submitted by candidates with their application. 

For the purpose of this case study- we’re going to use two recruiters. Let’s call the Video Interview recruiter Todd, and the Live Interview recruiter John. 


What begins the recruitment process? Job posting- of course. How else would people apply? This process looks very different with video interviews and live interviews.

Video Interviews

Todd creates his job advertisement. He outlines the ideal candidate and posts it to multiple free and paid job boards. Todd includes video questions with the application requirements. The questions Todd choses are specific to his industry and business, and he sets the responses to be 30seconds to 1minute long. 

The applications begin flooding in. Todd is on the train on his way to work and starts watching the video interviews that are saved to each candidate’s profile. Todd makes digital notes on the applicants he found most impressive. He wants to know what his colleagues think so Todd shares the video interviews via sms. Todd’s colleagues view the videos and make digital notes for Todd to see.  

After watching the videos, Todd believes he knows his candidates; soft skills, hard skills, emotional intelligence, personality traits, behaviour and potential. 

Todd then begins to contact the select few candidates he believes are most suited for the position.  

Live Interview

John creates his job advertisement. He outlines the ideal candidate and posts it to multiple job boards. Todd includes screening questions that require text responses. 

When John gets to work he begins reading the mountains of paperwork – cover letters and resumes. He tries to skim through, since there’s so many of them to get a better understanding of who the candidate is. 

John then compiles a pile of “assumed suitable” candidates and begins phone screening. He contacts them, and plays a few games of phone tag, with the intent of asking questions to hear (briefly) how the candidate communicates and presents themselves. 

After the many games of phone tag and phone screening an interview is then scheduled and John coordinates a time that suits himself and his executives.

The interviews will be held in real time (on Zoom, Google Meets etc) and last for 45min-1hr. Post interview, John and the other interviewers will discuss their thoughts and opinions. 


Recruitment can be a lengthy process if you don’t use advantageous tools. Let’s assess the time difference between video interviews and live interviews. 

Video Interviews

Each video interview is a compilation of three video answers, resulting in a total of roughly 1.5 minutes. Todd can view these recordings at any time, from anywhere. From his lounge, when in transit, at a cafe…

These recordings are also stored on a digital software, so they can be recalled at any time and viewed by all that are given access. The lack of time sensitive information means there’s no time delays, resulting in time and productivity efficiencies.  

Video interviews also eliminate the need to phone screen – reducing the length and steps of the recruitment process. 

As Todd is better informed on which candidates will be best suited to the position he only needs to contact the refined number of candidates he genuinely needs to interview. In the interview, Todd asks more direct questions as he has a pre-existing understanding of the candidates capabilities (therefore reducing the length of the interview). 

Thus, Todd is able to half the time of recruitment by watching 30second videos that reveal what an interview does.

Live interview

These interviews take 45minutes to 1hour. Unfortunately, John usually knows within the first few minutes whether or not the candidate would be suitable for the position and be a cultural fit. After the interview, John then needs to record his thoughts and why he believes the candidate is unsuitable. This must be done in case the candidate claims it was a prejudice decision. 

John can only hold live interviews during work hours. The same rules apply to phone screening calls. This elongates his recruitment process as the activities are only operating during set hours.  

John also has to involve his managers or colleagues ibn the interview, thereby working around multiple people’s schedules and reducing time availability. 

This traditional recruitment process is lengthy and involves more steps than if John had used video interviews. 


What can you put in place to ensure the hiring decision is the right hiring decision? We all know how expensive mis-hiring can be…. the time wasted and the cost involved. 

Video Interview

Video interviews promote objective decisions because of their sharing capabilities. Todd shares the videos with his colleagues, executives and managers. All stakeholders collaborate, discuss and decide based on the same stimuli. This ensures objectivity and uniformity. Thereby reducing any unconscious bias. 

The discussion between Todd and his colleagues results in a better understanding of the candidate, with greater insights revealed with minimal effort, therefore ensuring the candidate chosen is of the best quality. Therefore, reducing the hiring risk involved. 

Live Interview

John’s insights are gathered from a fictitious self-report (aka the resume), the phone screening and the interview. Let me ask you this, do you personally handle pressure well? Because I don’t. The interview may offer inaccurate insights to the candidates capabilities, therefore the quality of the candidate is unknown. 

The decision is also subjective as only John and potentially one other colleague is in the interview. Anyone else that reads the notes is reading the thoughts of one individual- therefore not making judgements based on objective stimuli. 

The hiring decision made by John has been time consuming and has not eliminated any risk of mis-hiring. It doesn’t aim to prevent bias and isn’t as efficient as Todd’s digital and modern recruitment process. 

As you can clearly see, there’s a significant difference between video interviews and live interviews. Not only in the interviewing process, but in the entire recruitment process and outcome. 

If you’re interested in trialing video interviews, and curious to see how they work, create a free plan here and have a play! Test it on yourself, or on candidates. No credit card needed and no strings attached…