Video Record Your Candidate Interviews… To Improve Your Hiring Results

Interviews are the highest impact assessment step, and interview effectiveness may improve by 33% with video recording.

The Content And The Evaluation Of Most Interviews Are Unfortunately Fleeting

Most interviews last about one hour, and most of what happened during the interview fades by the next day. After the interview ends, there is seldom any formal documentation of what occurred. There is no team record of the questions asked. Or more importantly, which answers were provided. Instead, each interviewer’s assessment of each candidate is mostly made up of less than one page of their notes supplemented with their memory. And because for each open job, the many interviews are often spread over 4 to 6 weeks. As time passes, almost every evaluator will have difficulty remembering all of each candidate’s strong and weak points. In addition, often, the traits of one candidate are mistakenly attributed to another candidate. Fortunately, technology has now given us a tool (the video function of your mobile phone) that provides a precise visual and audio record of the actual interview. So that evaluators no longer need to rely on their memory whenever they are comparing candidates.

The Low-Cost Easy To Implement Interview Improvement Tool 

Fortunately, you need to look no further than requiring each interview to be videoed, and the recording be kept for further use. This tool merely adds a requirement that someone video each in-person or Internet interview. Next, make the protected version of that video available to others involved in the hiring process. You can then use recorded video interviews in many ways, including expanding interview access to important stakeholders who simply couldn’t be available during the scheduled time of the initial live interview.

Appreciate The Many Benefits Of Video Recording Your Candidate Interviews

The best way to convince hiring managers, recruiters, and interviewers to adopt recorded interviews is by making a compelling business case highlighting, quantifying, and revealing the many benefits. The top 12 benefits from recorded interviews are found below, with the most impactful ones listed first.

  • Interviews will be more consistent, and the interview content will improve because peers will see them.  Once those managing each interview know that their peers will likely see and review the recordings of their interviews in the future, it puts pressure on all involved to follow the required company interview structure and protocols strictly. And it ensures that only job-related content will be covered during the interview.
  • Many additional assessors will have the opportunity to review the candidate’s interview. Recording your interviews allows you to later show the complete interview to others who could not be present during the original live interview. Expanding the pool of managers and employees that can assess a candidate will improve their overall assessment. While at the same time allowing more teammates to feel that they were given ample opportunity to provide their inputs. When global hiring is going on, recorded interviews can minimize the number of times that evaluators must stay awake across multiple time zones to know what happened in the original interview.
  • Recorded interviews make side-by-side simultaneous assessment easy.  Unfortunately, variations in candidate and hiring manager availability often mean that your top candidates will be interviewed weeks apart. The multi-week time gap makes it almost impossible to compare similar candidates side-by-side when the time comes to make the final decision. Fortunately, recorded interviews allow individuals to watch two or more interviews of top-quality candidates “back-to-back” and out of sequence, making comparing and contrasting several candidates much easier.
  • Recorded interviews allow evaluators to take a second look to revalidate their memory and rating. Often the entire hiring process is stretched over several months. Such an extended period makes it difficult to remember the content of interviews that occurred months early in the hiring process. However, visiting a recorded copy of the candidate’s original interview allows the interviewer to “refresh their memory.” And to verify that after numerous weeks that their original assessment and ranking of this early interviewee has not changed over time.
  • Less discrimination because the interview’s content is recorded. What happened during every interview will be recorded and seen by others. Those participating in the original interview are less likely to tolerate illegal questions, inappropriate stereotyping or non-job-related topics.
  • Recording an interview provides documentation to fight legal challenges. In a recorded video, behaviors, interview questions, and the answers are all clearly documented. HR can more easily legally demonstrate what happened (and what didn’t) during any particular interview should the EEOC challenge any hiring decision or process.
  • Recording an in-person interview is cheap and easy.  Everyone has a cell phone camera whose use requires no additional training. The only added costs related to recording might include the need for a small tripod. An app that protects passwords or encrypts videos to guarantee candidate privacy perpetually. When using a remote app like Zoom, the recording and storage are already built into the system.
  • Expect an increase in candidate honesty.  You may get a higher rate of candidate honesty during a recorded interview. The candidate knows that the interview is recorded. Making it easier for the firm to confront a candidate’s answers after talking to their references. 
  • The wording in recorded videos can be translated for global evaluators.  For global hiring, online translation services can add captions in multiple languages to make the interviews more accessible.
  • Evaluators can scan recorded interviews and save time.  An evaluator can save a lot of time because they can quickly skip through video segments with low importance. In many cases, they can also speed up the audio and focus on the most relevant questions and answers.
  • The video recording tool creates little resistance.  Most talent acquisition professionals already know that almost all traditional interview processes consistently contain serious shortcomings. But despite this need for change and before any tool or solution can be implemented. Recruiting leaders need to realize that there still remains a powerful resistance to changing any part of the traditional interview process at organizations of every size. So, understand that for the tool to be successful. It will also have to minimize or avoid the intense resistance that inevitably accompanies instituting any major change in your existing core interviewing process. And fortunately, the video recruiting tool for improving interviews only adds a single low controversy feature to the interview process.
  • It’s easier to pass along quality candidates to other hiring managers. Due to fit with the manager or a “superstar” in the candidate slate ahead of them, individuals not selected can be considered for other openings. A video recording of the interview can be forwarded to other internal hiring managers without bringing the candidate back in for an additional interview.

Minimizing Potential Implementation Problems

Obviously, as part of the implementation, you will need to check with your legal team on the state-by-state requirements related to gaining consent for recording. However, I have found that fewer candidates raise issues related to privacy or the stress added when recorded with the recent widespread use of Zoom. Finally, over time it also makes sense to monitor and measure whether recorded video interviews accurately predict on-the-job performance. And if these types of interviews have any adverse impact on protected groups.

Final Thoughts

Because the traditional interview process is so entrenched, I have found that the best way to improve it successfully is to start by attempting to minimize the creation of any controversy. Instead, tweak the interview process in areas where you get a lot of impact with little intense resistance.  In my experience, the requirement to video record all interviews for future referral should be that first interview improvement tool that you try.

Author’s Note 

  • This article was designed to make you rethink a relatively obscure management area. And if it succeeded, please help others by sharing it widely among your team and network.
  • Next, please join the many thousands that have connected with Dr. Sullivan on LinkedIn. After following core connecting, you can leave and read comments on this article on his page. 
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About Dr John Sullivan

Dr John Sullivan is an internationally known HR thought-leader from the Silicon Valley who specializes in providing bold and high business impact; strategic Talent Management solutions to large corporations.

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