Career Insight: What is a Video Interview?

12th December 2013


We came across an interesting article from RecruitmentBuzz recently, which looks at the trend for video interviewing. Below, we have summarised accordingly.

Matt Alder of Metashift a digital, social and mobile strategy company has always been fascinated by emerging technology and he decided to research into the idea of a ‘video interview’. He found that the technology and the definition could vary to significant degrees depending on who you were talking to and decided to clarify the varying types.

The definition of a ‘video interview’ is not altogether clear at this stage and it has been causing some confusion. More often than not people can have differing definitions of the term, which can cause frustration as they do not realise straight away that they are talking about two different techniques of interview.

Here are some of the techniques and clear definitions based on what Matt Alder found during his research:

Onsite Video Interviewing
This technique is often used in large organisations and involves a candidate having an interview at one office site while the hiring manager or recruiter is at another location. This will use Telepresence or similar technology already used within the company and it would be requested to suit the employer rather than the candidate.

Live Video Interviewing
This is the method that is most popular with businesses and is usually what people understand as the common definition of ‘video interviewing.’ The candidate and interviewer taking part conduct a two-way remote conversation from any location. Some employers would still question the reliability of this type of interview but using technology like Skype and Google Hangouts appears to be the most popular for this type of communication. This would induce a low cost for both parties and both would already be used to these common techniques of video communication.

Recorded Video, Asynchronous or On Demand Interviewing
This technique is the least understood but this is probably due to the use of various names, however it would certainly benefit the employer greatly. Asynchronous interviews are the least intrusive for both the employer and the candidate as it allows the person interviewing for the job to record themselves answering a list of questions set out by the employer. A recruiter would be able to assess and re-assess the interview in their own time and as many times as they require. This type of video interview will often replace the first round of telephone interviews or face to face interviews.

This new technology has seen some resistance and scepticism, as with most innovations relating to how a company recruit new staff members with some people not keen to embrace change. In Matt Alder’s research he found there was a very positive response from those who had used this type of interview including cost reduction, efficiency, transparency, consistency of recruitment and a better standard of candidate at the final stage especially considering the time that had been saved.

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