HR Technology, Recruiting and Staffing

6 Reasons Why Video Interviewing Will Soon Go Mainstream

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Enterprise tech is “hot” for the right reasons.

The barriers to entry, once the sole domain of the tech behemoths, are diminishing, and it is now cheaper than ever to build software that can be accessed by anyone, from any place, at anytime.

One industry that is ripe for innovation is the human resources sector, and more specifically, the recruiting part of it. In a recent survey conducted by SilkRoad on the State of Talent Management, only 38 percent of companies reported that their HR systems were fully automated.

The good news is that the declining barriers to entry and the increasing comfort with SaaS, is leading to a range of innovative solutions across the HR spectrum. One in particular that is reaching a tipping point is video interviewing.

Until now, neither the technology nor the market has really been ready for it on a widespread scale. Here are 6 reasons why that has now changed (in no particular order):

1. The challenge is selection, not sourcing

It has never been easier to source talent. LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook have made us hyper connected, meaning that there are no longer any barriers to “getting in touch.” Because it is so easy, candidates are able to seek out employers and submit their CVs to anyone at the click of a button, often resulting in resume overload.

Employers are equally able to cast the net wide and directly target anyone that might fit the bill. The recruitment challenge therefore becomes one of selection rather than sourcing.

2. The mobile & contingent workforces are here to stay

No matter what Marissa Mayer has to say about the matter, technology has fundamentally changed the way we work. It allows people with different skills, in different locations to collaborate on projects in a way that has never been possible before.

Assuming teams need to be in the same place limits the talent pool dramatically and stifles diversity. According to forecasts from a recent PwC report on the future of talent mobility, by 2020 the average number of mobile employees in large organizations is expected to increase to 50 percent. Traditional methods of recruitment and staffing will prove too costly in such an environment.

3. Cost-per-hire IS relevant

I have read a series of articles recently that suggest companies should neither focus on, or even track, the cost-per-hire.

In case you haven’t noticed, top line growth is a little harder to come by these days and CEOs are under increasing pressure to deliver healthy profits. Research from Koncept Analytics estimates that the worldwide recruitment market could reach $369 billion next year, which means there is a lot of room to be more efficient.

4. Candidates are comfortable using video

Skype, Facetime, YouTube, GoToMeeting video is now an integral part of our every day lives.

Unlike five years ago, video cameras are everywhere (in your laptop, tablet, smartphone) and the quality is largely pretty good. Rather than flying to another state for a job interview that might not work out, candidates are able to be interviewed remotely, saving time and cost for both parties.

Candidates also are given the opportunity to convey more about themselves from the outset and potentially standout in the process.

5. The cloud facilitates greater collaboration

The cloud has allowed us to store content remotely and provide users with 24 hour access to it. This creates tremendous operating efficiencies for hiring managers, as well the ability to more effectively collaborate on the candidate assessment & selection process.

Rather than interview one candidate after another and attempt to recount the takeaways weeks or even months later, a hiring manager (or recruiter), can build a digital interview, share it with many candidates, and review the applications as many times as they like. They can also invite other co-workers or colleagues to review the interviews and provide their feedback in a structured and transparent manner.

6. It improves decision making and leads to better hires!

Building a digital interview forces companies to think more about their interview questions, what attributes they value most, and their company branding. Making hiring decisions when you are able to see all candidates in one place allows you to make individual decisions with reference to the whole, which improves diversity and overall hiring outcomes.

Finally, being able to collectively review and rate candidate interviews means you are far more likely to hire someone that is a better fit with the company’s overall culture.

Mark Finn is the Founder & CEO of TalentBox, a video enabled digital interview platform that has operations in the U.S. and Australia and is used by over 100 clients globally. Mark is passionate about improving the recruitment experience for both companies & candidates through innovation & technology. Contact him at mark@talentbox.me or connect on Linkedin.
  • David Anderson, SPHR

    Hi Mark. Good article. I would have to say that while most younger candidates may be comfortable with video interviewing, most hiring managers and older applicants are not. I feel what is needed is a simplification to create a non-regulated industry standard of the hardware and software so that it can be more inclusive. Most of us have cameras on our laptops but we don’t really know how to use them in a way to effectively and professionally present ourselves.

    • Mark Finn

      Thanks David. It is a good point, however, I see that as a failure of design & user experience on the platform side, rather than an inability for older applicants to adapt. In the same way that people learn general interview skills, the future will require them to learn digital interview skills. One of our key values at TalentBox is “If it’s not immediately obvious, it’s not obvious enough.” We aspire to build things that are intuitive and a great experience for our users (and PS, my grandmother is one of the most tech savy people I know!)

  • Doug Fauth

    Great article and I agree 100%. Ever thought about video phone screens? Talk about increasing your ROI.

    • Mark Finn

      Thanks Doug. Yes, a great example of technologies ability to reduce CPH / increase ROI. There is a lot of exciting innovation happening in the area and I believe that those recruiters and hiring managers that are early adopters will be more successful and effective in the long run.

  • Mark O’Donnell

    Could not disagree more that the challenge is no longer sourcing. The world is a large space and we now work across boarders. All that has happened is that we now access more easily our known/local networks, the challenge is sourcing is to cast the net wider.

    Agree completely on the selection challenge.

    • Mark Finn

      Thanks Mark. There are obviously challenges in both. My statement was intended to be relative. Because there is a larger talent pool, that can be accessed quite easily and quickly, the relative time spent to assess & shortlist becomes greater.

  • Meghan Barrowcliff

    As a Candidate, I welcome every chance to demonstrate my potential and have no problem engaging with companies via a video interview. In the same way a company is looking to assess candidates, candidates are looking to assess companies, and seeing the questions they ask in advance gives you a good idea of who they are and what they are after. I think any tools that help achieve this are worthy of trying out.

    • Mark Finn

      Thanks Meghan, couldn’t agree more. Strong candidates will always welcome the ability to distinguish themselves from others. The greater the ability to assess both the candidate, company and job opportunity the better. Ultimately that leads to better decision making both ends, and better outcomes. The candidate experience is something we have focused on strongly at TalentBox.

      • http://www.facebook.com/sam.stern.73 Sam Stern

        I agree with this post, especially with point # 3. The HR industry IS ripe for innovation and cost per hire IS increasingly important. I stumbled upon a website that enables video interviews, but the unique thing about it is their process: the allow employers to ‘bid’ on selected employees and negotiate a salary range BEFORE the interview. This way, employers can save time by interviewing only the most relevant candidates, but also save money when they can start the bid at any number, and negotiate it to the candidate’s ACCEPTABLE salary, rather than their ‘expected’ salary. The cost per hire can decrease dramatically! In the same way, job seekers can ‘bid’ on jobs they select. I think this new site is worth mentioning here: http://www.whitsy.com

  • Michele

    I can see opportunity for virtual interviews and agree with contributors the potential for greater success lies primarily with candidates aged 20-40 that were born into a tech savvy world whereas others sectors of sourcing might not be viable candidates. Next may be promo videos used not unlike models, actors, and some college applicants. Until the standard for hiring does not discrimated based upon technological advantages,the pool of talent will not be fully represented.

    • Mark Finn

      Hi Michele. I think it depends on the type of role you are hiring for. If the role requires you to use a computer, which most do, I don’t think it would be limiting to require applicants to complete a digital interview (which does not necessarily need to be video based either – it could be a series of cognitive, behavioral or technical questions that are answered in writing by the candidate online). One thing that is pretty standard across all jobs however is the ability to communicate and work as part of a team (yes even coders need to do this from time to time!). Using video to assess this is useful in my opinion.

  • Alchemy

    And of course providing evidence for potential lawsuits and litigation with disgruntled unsuccessful candidates.
    This technology has many benefits and some associated negatives. We use video conferencing with varied success (not unlike the use of face-to-face interviewing). However anything that makes the organisation attract talent needs to be considered seriously. i would continue to advocate the use for knowledge workers and hard to fill positions where geography is a factor.

    • Mark Finn

      Hi Alchemy. Good point re the transparency of the process. I would recommend trying a platform where you preset questions which you can send to as many candidates as you like, who can respond in their own time. Video conferencing is fine, but it lacks the discipline around structuring the interview itself. It also makes it more difficult to share with other co-workers and you still have to schedule times which can be costly for large pools of applicants. With regard to the types of workers, definitely agree with you with regard hard to fill positions and positions where geography is a factor. We do however see our platform used a lot for relatively low skilled positions where companies are looking to assess basic presentation and communication skills.

  • http://www.sweetrush.com/ Catherine Davis

    As one of the hiring manager for a 100% virtual company, I do spend a lot of time doing phone interviews. Thanks for the great information on video interviewing. Implementing this practice will really help me take my game to the next level.
    -Catherine Davis, Instructional Design Practice Lead for Sweetrush

  • http://www.facebook.com/charla.lovelace Charla P Lovelace

    Mark, thanks for the post! Making this a must read if you’ve been asked to bring video into the recruitment process. Bottom line is that video is a necessary element in recruiting. Utilizing video tells your leaders that you’re tech savvy, connected, and most importantly video can positively effect your bottom line.

  • Mark Finn

    Thank you all for the comments. It’s great to see so many people passionate about the issue and industry in general. Please feel free to check out a recent interview on Total Picture Radio where I discuss some of the points in more detail: http://lnkd.in/NbibNX. Kind Regards, Mark

  • victor baldi

    We are an IT technology company. We also do talent sourcing. Video screening is very important step when looking for GOOD IT talent. It is almost like f2f interview.

  • George

    I recently had a “video interview” with HIRE ART. It was not a real time video but one in which I was required to answer question before a web Cab then send in the “recordings” for evaluation to see if I would progress to the next step. Like it or not it interviewing seems to heading in this direction or a variation thereof.

  • James

    I’m a corporate recruiter with a big multinational bank, and we’ve been using Aqazo’s digital video interview solution for 6 months now. I have to say, it makes life much easier. We get so many CVs that look good on paper, but end up rejecting 90% of candidates after doing a telephone interview, because candidates just aren’t good at communicating; and out of the ones that are, we find half have poor presentation when we call them in for an in-person interview. I think these products are here to stay. Candidates need to learn to use them well – treat them as a real interview, because you will get accepted or rejected based on this.