Video interviews are the latest, tech-savvy candidate-screening tool for managers and recruiters. However, the general consensus across social media and HR forums is that video interviews are too-commonly disliked by job-seekers. They are often labelled as impersonal, uncomfortable and of minimal value considering the effort required to complete them.
MyRecruitment+ is here to tell you – video interviews don’t have to leave this impression! Employers can get creative with their video interview methods, in order to:
- Discover unique insights into their candidates, and
- Help provide a better candidate experience for applicants.
Firstly, what are video interviews?
Video interviews are a one-way interview method, where candidates pre-record themselves answering a set of questions determined by the employer. Candidates are provided with a link to a landing page, where they are asked questions, and prompted to record a video response. Employers have the capability to customise the questions, the time-allocated to complete them, as well as recording options (e.g. one chance or the option for candidates to re-record).
Once the candidate has completed the questions, hiring managers are able to review their responses as many times as desired, and access a psychometric evaluation report, analysing the candidate’s behaviour.
Note* Video interviews are not to be confused with live-online interviews, which are conducted in real time between a candidate and HR / hiring manager, via video-communication platforms such as Zoom or Microsoft Teams.
Why do employers use video interviews?
Video interviews are an interactive alternative to traditional ‘screening question forms’, and can also be used as an additional screening-step prior to a live interview. They provide employers with an opportunity to grasp a candidate’s personality and determine whether they possess the necessary soft skills required for the role. They are an efficient way to screen the suitability of multiple candidates, in a short period of time.
Let’s discuss how video interviews can be leveraged to test-run a candidate’s skills, display their personality, and get them to show (not just tell) employers why they’re the best person for the job. After all, actions speak louder than words.
1. “Solve a problem”
Problem solving skills are some of the most in demand qualities that recruiters look for. No candidate is exempt from the need to solve problems; every single industry and career-discipline will be confronted with an onslaught of challenges in daily life.
Roles that require especially high-level problem solving capabilities include management positions, medical professionals, customer service specialists, technical support professionals and engineers. Despite this, almost every role could benefit from a problem solving element to a video interview.
So, instead of asking a candidate: “Explain a time you have solved a problem in your professional life”, provide them with a scenario, and get them to solve it! Start the question with “What would you do if…” and present the candidate with a fictitious (or even real-life) role-specific dilemma.
Tip: Make it specific! This minimises the risk of a candidate running off a pre-prepared, memorised answer they read on google.
2. “Sell me something”
This is a fun one. If you’re hiring a salesperson, why not put them to the test in a video interview? A salesperson could rattle off years of sales experience and list their greatest achievements..but that’s what a resume is for!
Instead of asking a candidate “tell me about what makes you different as a salesperson”, get them to show you.
You could ask the candidate to choose a random object in their surroundings, and sell it to you in under a minute. The more bizarre the object, the better! This is an opportunity to test the creativity, communication skills and energy of a candidate. It also provides a practical example of their selling style, allowing managers to determine if they would be a good fit for the role.
This is a way to incorporate an element of fun into the video interview, while still providing the candidate with the opportunity to express how they operate as a professional.
3. “Speak in another language”
In the globalised world we live in, speaking multiple languages is often a required skill needed in the workforce. Examples of these professions include customer service representatives, flight attendants, hospitality managers, or any role within an international company. Video interviews are the ultimate method to determine whether the candidate is actually fluent in the required language, or they just scraped through high-school French.
For roles where being bilingual is a necessity, instead of asking them to tick a box, get them to film themselves and show-off their ability!
4. “Pitch me an idea”
This is one to consider when hiring creatives, such as marketing professionals and designers. As an employer, candidates in these fields would have likely provided a portfolio of their work, or specific examples of creative-ideas they implemented in previous roles. Why just get them to repeat the same thing in a video interview?
Instead of asking, “tell me about an idea you’ve implemented in the past”, present them with the company’s current marketing or design strategy, or ask them to have a browse of the website/social media pages, and ask them to offer a suggestion.
Let the candidate know that nothing is off limits! Asking this question in a video interview would demonstrate the candidate’s thinking style, creative flare, and the scale of their ideas.
5. “Make me something”
As an ex-bartender, this is a personal favourite of mine. Although this idea probably isn’t applicable to most job-types, it would work perfectly when hiring hospitality professionals.
Incorporating this ultra-interactive idea into your video interview will leave a lasting impression on candidates… they won’t be able to stop talking about it!
Instead of asking “what is your signature cocktail”, or “what is your signature dish”, get them to show you!
This question would require the candidate to put in a bit of preparation, but it can definitely be done. Challenging your candidate to make something delicious in one-minute will force them to step-outside the box, demonstrate their creativity, resourcefulness and show the employer how they work under pressure.
Managers need to stop asking questions that are already answered in a candidate’s resume. Job-seekers hate it when their time is wasted – so make sure their video interview is adding value to their application. Remember: video interviews are only as useful as the questions they ask. Have fun with it! Show your candidates that your company isn’t too serious, and let them express themselves!
Want to learn about the best video-interview software available? Click here.