7 Tips For Carrying Out Remote Job Interviews

Remote interviewing is convenient and cost-effective for employers – reducing transportation costs, speeding up the interviewing process, and allowing companies to more easily interview candidates who are not local. As a result, shortlisting candidates by holding online job interviews via video conferencing software has been steadily increasing in popularity.

More and more employers are making use of tools such as Zoom, Skype, or Microsoft Teams, to hold online interviews, with some companies even carrying out the induction process online for successful applicants. This is particularly common with remote working or flexible roles that allow employees to work from home.

There are lots of articles giving advice to applicants on how to ace an online job interview, but far fewer dishing out advice to employers on how to carry them out effectively. Here are seven top tips if you are an employer considering carrying out remote job interviews:

  1. Avoid Discrimination

If the role requires that the candidate has strong ICT literacy, holding an online interview may not be much of a concern. However, you should be mindful that not everyone has the same digital skillset, and you could end up unintentionally discriminating against individuals if you do not offer an alternative means of interview, such as a telephone interview. It could also be off-putting to some candidates if they are aware that interviews are only being held online, which could reduce the talent pool you have to choose from.

  1. Issue Some Guidance

This should help with the point above. It’s very possible that the candidates you plan to interview will not have had an online job interview before. Why not send a quick one-page guidance document out with the interview confirmation letter or email?

This can include information on what software you will use to host the interview, how long the interview should last, and how many interviewers there will be. You can also include some tips on how the candidate can create an effective interview space at home – such as minimising distractions, using a well-lit location (but not back-lit), using a laptop or desktop device rather than a mobile phone, and even some steps on how they can carry out a trial run to make sure their speakers and microphones are working correctly.

These tips might seem obvious, but job candidates can be nervous and forgetful. This way, you’re giving every opportunity for the interviewee to set themselves up for success.

  1. Set the Scene

You should ensure you follow your own advice from above! Make sure the interviewers are in a distraction-free location, that all the technology has been tested to ensure it works correctly prior to the interviews taking place, and that email notifications, mobile phones, and other devices are turned off or on silent.

  1. Get Rid of ‘What’s Your Greatest Weakness?’

Interview questions should be well thought out and relevant to the role. Focus on asking questions that are related to behaviours or situations and find alternative ways to get the responses you’re after without asking cliched questions that are outdated. Interviewing based on job-related characteristics is becoming increasingly common, with interviewees being set a practical task or problem to solve. This can be more challenging to asses using online interviewing, so consider how you can adapt these questions and tasks to suit the online environment.

  1. Body Language Matters

Remote interviews mean there’s no opportunity to have a handshake, making direct eye contact can be a little more tricky, and you are likely to be less conscious of your body language and posture when not in the same room as the candidate. Speak clearly, use engaging body language, and remember to look at the camera, not at yourself on the screen.

  1. Virtual Culture Pitch

When conducting interviews remotely, candidates won’t be able to get a feel for your organisational culture as they won’t be waiting in reception, chatting with colleagues, getting a tour of your premises, or be able to get a general ‘feeling’ about the company. To compensate for this, you could provide a PDF or video company info pack that includes promotional literature, links to company PDFs, and links to the company website and social media pages. In addition, if remote interviewing is a permanent recruitment method for your company, you could commission a series of short videos that show a ‘day in the life’ of a range of employees, or interview employees on camera about their experiences with the company.

  1. Follow-up and Ask for Feedback

Just as you would with any in-person interview – follow-up with the candidate. Thank them for their time and ask them for any feedback they may have on the remote interviewing process. Finally, let the candidate know whether they have been successful, and if not, include some feedback for them on how they could improve next time.

For more information or to request a call email info@tysonwilsonrecruitment.co.uk or call 07860636486

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