Hiring? Tips For Hosting A Successful Video Interview

March 31, 2020 Alissa DeMaio

video interview tips

Remote work certainly has its perks, but for many of us it also has its challenges. In this blog series, we’ll focus on the home office, discussing ways to adapt, and conquer—both as an employer and an employee. This is post five of the series. You can follow the rest of the series and read our past posts here.

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The workforce has never been more virtual, as many people are now in a place where it is imperative to work from home. As the current state of “work” continues to evolve and adapt, so will essential business processes like hiring. If you’re an employer with recruiting on the agenda, a remote interview process may be breaking new ground for you. If you’re looking for ways to impress top talent while conducting a successful video interview, here are six tips:

Confirm the details

As an employer, it’s up to you to make your candidates feel comfortable throughout the interview process. A video interview is no different. If you have a video call coming up, ensure you confirm the details with your candidate at least 24 hours in advance. Include information such as the link for joining, approximately how long the call will last, and if anyone else from your team will be participating. You want to be as transparent as possible so that surprises like an impromptu guest appearance, don’t catch them off guard. Taking this small step can make a candidate feel relaxed, prepared, and ultimately comfortable about the process.

Test your technology

Whether you’re using a new platform to host your video interviews, or the same trustworthy technology your organization has used for years, it’s crucial to test it. Block out some time before your call to do a practice run with someone in your IT department or on your team. Use this time to confirm that your camera and microphone are working properly, and that your internet connection is stable. You should also double check that the technology you’re using doesn’t have any time limits that may cause it to suddenly close during your call—a common feature with some free video conferencing tools.

Remember to allow yourself enough time to fix any issues if they do arise. If you don’t, you run into the risk of looking unorganized and possibly undesirable to a potentially great candidate.

Check your surroundings

As an employer (and host), it’s crucial to find a quiet, distraction-free space where you can give your candidate your utmost attention. If not, you may miss important details about the candidate, and this can hurt your chances of finding the right person for the job.

Ensure that anything that can be seen on camera is not going to take away from the attention that you and the candidate will give each other during the interview. If you will be sharing your screen for any reason, check you do not have any files or browser tabs open with confidential or sensitive company information. It is also important to ensure any team chats are closed—this will avoid any unnecessary pop-ups appearing on-screen during your call.

Set the tone

It is equally as important for you to make a good impression on a candidate, as it is for them to make a good impression on you. While the dress code for your “home office” is likely lax, ensure to opt for a professional look for your video call. This will set the tone for the rest of the interview, and prove to the candidate that you’re as serious about the process as they are.

Show up prepared

As interviewing can take up a lot time, you’ll want to be as efficient as possible during the process. Reviewing your candidate’s skills and experience ahead of time can help you come up with specific questions you may want to ask them. These can include questions about a lapse of employment, a special project listed on their resume, or why they may have made certain professional moves throughout their career. Their answers to questions like these can help you better decide if they would be the right person for your organization, and if you’d like to move forward with them in the process.

Clarify next steps

Like any interview, it’s important to keep the candidate informed, especially as top talent will be picked up quickly. Before your call comes to an end, be sure to share key details with your candidate about next steps. These include, where you are in the hiring process, when you are looking to fill the role, if you have a project you’d like them to complete, or if you’d like them to meet with anyone else within the company. If you don’t think the candidate is the right person for the role, remember to let them know too. It doesn’t have to be during the interview, but it’s never fun to be left in the dark, and it can reflect negatively on your organization.

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