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One-way video interviews: Pros and cons for recruiters


No matter how easily you’re able to navigate the employment market, recruiting and interviewing take time. Although there are techniques to help speed up the process (such as pre-screening examinations, panel interviews, and group interviews), a one-way video interview is a simple alternative that could be ideal for your company.

As technology becomes more accessible and advanced, businesses look for new methods that make the hiring process more efficient. And one-way interviews could be a game-changer.

How do one-way interviews work?

Instead of personally engaging you in the hiring process, candidates applying for your vacant roles through a one-way video process should be provided with a list of pre-determined questions to record and send back for evaluation. Since candidates record their videos independently and at a time of their choosing, they’re often described as asynchronous video interviews.

The time candidates are allowed to create their videos is usually one of the variations of asynchronous video interviews. You may choose to be more accommodating and give your candidates a week, or you might prefer to allow a more limited time period. 

There’s also the question of how much flexibility you provide for reruns: Will you allow your candidates to redo their interviews if they’re not satisfied with their performance? 

And another variable is interview length. This is typically determined by how many questions you want to ask and how long candidates have to respond to each question. 

Disadvantages of one-way video interviews

No recruitment approach or strategy works for every sector, role, or company, nor is any single hiring process perfect. The trick is to find the most effective and appropriate recruitment process for each vacant position. Here, we look at the pros and cons of one-way video interviews to see if they might work for your company. Let’s start with the disadvantages.

Not all candidates are tech-savvy

Most people assume that job seekers will be familiar with technology and able to navigate online environments. This isn’t always the case. Your candidates will have to connect to and navigate the website you use to run the interviews. 

An applicant will also need to place the camera in the best lighting possible, ensuring crystal clear audio and video streams. They’ll also need to connect the device to the internet and ensure they have a stable connection. This can be difficult for applicants who aren’t particularly tech-savvy.

Candidates facing technical problems

Besides the inability to handle technology easily, there may be issues with internet connectivity and lousy audio or video quality that won’t bode well for the candidate. For example, some candidates will have access to an environment with great lighting, excellent internet connectivity, and high-quality recording devices. 

Disadvantages of one-way video interviews

On the other hand, if a candidate doesn’t have a computer to record on, they may have to use their phone and possibly deal with a poor internet connection. In this example, they may not have enough time to answer if their internet connectivity is fluctuating, or they may speak for the required time, but the device doesn’t record everything. Someone could be an excellent candidate, but they may make a poor impression during a one-way video interview and lose the job.

Lack of opportunity to create a real relationship with candidates

Not all interview candidates are perfect, but specific candidates fare better in an interview to establish a human connection. Some candidates respond better to one-on-one interactions rather than talking to a machine during a one-way video interview. 

In addition, you may find out more about a candidate who increases their suitability in a one-on-one conversation. Because video interviews leave no room for deviation from the script, you might miss out on learning important information about candidates who would make great employees.

The interviewee may give false impressions

Some interviewees may be excellent performers who can create a misleading impression. Some can craft the best answers that present them in the best light concerning the topics at hand. 

On the other hand, some interviewees may perform poorly on camera and appear to be bad candidates when it’s just that the mode of delivery wasn’t right for them. Just as there are distinct learning styles, there are different communication styles, and some people find it challenging to speak in front of a camera.

No option for interviewees to ask questions

If an interviewee doesn’t understand the questions, they may be unable to request clarification. Sometimes a candidate doesn’t have a correct answer to the issue presented in its context, but they may have a solution to an alternative. 

A new job applicant, for example, may not have prior experience in the area but might have expertise in a different sector and transferrable skills. They can’t answer a query regarding another domain if it concerns a different specific field.

Your company may come off as mechanical

Some candidates won’t apply for the position because of the mode of conducting the interview. At the same time, not meeting face-to-face could result in a misleading image of your company. They may believe that your company lacks a personal touch and is instead highly mechanical. 

Employees want to work for a business that values them as individuals. Part of that sense stems from an interview with the company’s representatives face-to-face.

Advantages of one-way video interviews

Despite the disadvantages listed above, there are also many advantages of one-way video interviews that might persuade you that this is the way to go for your recruitment process. Let’s have a look at some of these.

One-way interviews shorten the interview length

When you’ve decided on the questions you want to put to candidates, post them on the interviewing website and wait for candidate answers. In theory, you can conduct ten asynchronous video interviews in the time it takes to finish one face-to-face interview.

They save you time by eliminating lengthy phone calls with unsuitable applicants. Sometimes you might realize the applicant isn’t right within the first few minutes of the interview, but you don’t have the means to stop the conversation politely. With one-way video interviews, you can screen out the “poor” prospects far more quickly before moving on to the next stage of the recruiting process. 

Streamline and speed up the hiring process

With one-way video interviews, you’ll have time to do other things while waiting for applicants to finish their interviews. Once they’re done, you can review the interviews at your leisure and in the way you deem suitable. 

For example, you might simply compare the recordings of applicants’ interviews side by side. In this analysis, you can consider many elements of the candidates, such as their body language and tone, and judge their appropriateness. You can also solicit input from other members throughout the interviews, making the final choice collaborative. All of this simplifies your ultimate decision.

Advantages of one-way video interviews for interviewers

Filter out bad candidates before proceeding with the rest of the interviewing process

If a candidate lacks the requisite qualities and talents, you won’t need to approach them for follow-up interviews. This saves time in the future since you can narrow the field and interview fewer applicants.

Improve your ability to test qualities and skills in the interview 

During a one-way video interview, you may be able to put particular talents to the test more efficiently. For example, assume the position for which you’re seeking applicants is IT-related. In that situation, a candidate who doesn’t understand how to operate their devices to conduct the interview is removed. 

If the applicant is required to speak a foreign language, you can have them respond to the questions in that language. Of course, you can’t assess all skills in this manner, but it can be a helpful tool when suitable.

Increase your ability to connect with remote candidates

Not all jobs necessitate that the candidate lives close to their employer. Working remotely is rapidly becoming more frequent in this digital age, so conducting remote video interviews makes sense. Virtual assistants, for example, may reside halfway around the world from their employers. 

In other cases, a candidate may only relocate if they are sure of getting the job. One-way video interviews allow you to interact with candidates from wherever they are.

Solve scheduling problems, especially for already employed candidates

By conducting one-way video interviews, you broaden the candidate pool from which to choose. You might need to undertake recruitment interviews during working hours on weekdays. This implies that an employee will have to create a reason to leave work and attend the interview.

However, if you choose to conduct one-way video interviews, scheduling issues are no longer a problem. Instead, candidates can complete the interview whenever it’s most convenient for them, and this flexibility attracts more applicants.

Get more insights on the candidate that you would on a CV

It’s widely known that some candidates falsify or exaggerate their resumes. You can catch out some of these applicants in their falsehoods via one-way video interviews. An applicant who lies about speaking a specific language but is unable to do so during the interview, for example, is removed. Similarly, in the video, a sales professional with an authoritarian attitude is removed.

You can learn more about applicants by studying their verbal and nonverbal clues. Furthermore, some visual behavioral patterns can allow you to determine whether a candidate is acting suspiciously, indicating that they’re lying and persuading you to eliminate them from the interview.

Easy comparison of the interviews

In many one-way video interviews, candidates have a set amount of time to answer each question. They must provide their best response within that time frame. When deciding which prospects to call back, just compare their responses to each question, evaluating them based on how suitable they were. It’s simpler to compare these prospects since you record their responses rather than relying on interview notes.

Advantages for candidates

One-way video interviews help more than just recruiters. The applicants might also benefit from the experience. Here are some advantages for applicants.

They can do the one-way video interviews on their own time

If an applicant is working or otherwise preoccupied, they may be unable to make time for physical meetings or phone conversations at your convenience. They can, however, record the one-way video interviews in their own time and in the best possible environment.

They save the money spent traveling to the interview

Consider an unemployed individual trying to make ends meet. One-way video interviews only require a device that can connect to the internet and internet access. These expenses are sometimes far cheaper than going to numerous interviews.

They’re able to interview for jobs worldwide

Consider a person interviewing from the other side of the world. It’s more convenient for the candidate to interview for the job electronically rather than go halfway around the world. This is especially true if your vacant role requires the successful candidate to work from home.

Advantages of one-way video interviews for candidates

Shy candidates feel more at ease

Not everyone is a social butterfly. Some people thrive in social situations, while others are terrified of them. A candidate who has the opportunity to interview in their comfort zone may exhibit their strongest abilities in that setting.

Interviewees may redo a one-way video interview if they feel they need to edit them

In one-on-one interviews, a candidate might make errors and say things they don’t mean. It’s not often that they get a second chance. With one-way video interviews, redoing a recording is often possible. This enables candidates to make the most significant impression on you and allows you to avoid watching endless poor first attempts and focus on candidates at their best.

Are one-way video interviews the way for your company?

One-way interviews aren’t a black and white subject. Some believe they are an excellent method for recruiters to streamline the interview process, save time, and attract more applicants. However, others believe that one-way interviews are an impersonal means of hiring staff. 

One-way video interviews represent a crucial new recruitment method, but they are still just one of the various approaches suitable for different needs. It’s up to you to choose whether asynchronous interviews will meet the demands for your vacant role or whether you prefer traditional interviews. And in the end, the purpose of recording replies and comparing them is the same: to find the best applicant for the position.

With TestGorilla, you can add asynchronous video questions as part of your pre-employment skills testing assessment. Try it for free today.


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