The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic worldwide has drastically changed the recruiting process. As we have to follow social distancing and other precautions, work from home is the new norm in the corporate world.
Here is where remote interviews came into play. An interviewer can conduct remote or virtual interviews without meeting the candidate physically. Even though separated geographically, the interview is conducted via phone call or video call using tools like Skype, Zoom, Intervue etc.
As the trend is not ending anytime soon, you need to conduct a virtual structured interview to make the recruiting process run smoothly.
So, how to conduct a successful remote interview? Here are some essential ways which will help you conduct the best possible remote or virtual interviews.
Review Your Existing Recruiting Process
As the world is shifting towards remote hiring, you need to review your existing recruiting process and find a way to make it more effective and structured as well.
You can conduct an online assessment test which will help you narrow down your searches to find the right talent for your organization. Without meeting a candidate in person, it is important to make sure you can assess applicants for the skills and competencies required in your organization.
Choose The Right Video Interview Tool
If you have not used a video interviewing tool before, choosing the right tool can be challenging. Some prominent video calling tools are Zoom, Skype, Gotomeeting, Webex, and Google Meet.
There are also tools for coding interviews. They have integrate code editor, whiteboarding tools and other features that help recruiters.
Before choosing the right tool for your remote interview, identify its features and check whether it caters to your company’s needs or not. Some features to consider include: HD quality video conferencing, good sound quality, easy-to-use interface, etc.
Prepare Technology To Avoid Glitches
Conducting a remote interview can be challenging for employers. Remote or virtual interviews are more prone to glitches, such as internet issues, PC issues, etc. To avoid that, a day before the interview, you can conduct a trial run for your video conferencing platform, such as Zoom or Skype, giving yourself enough time to adapt if anything isn’t working.
Check your webcam, microphone, and internet, and make sure you know your login information, especially if you haven’t used the interview tool in a while.
If you are using your laptop or tablet, check your Wi-Fi connection and ensure your equipment is charged and set to go.
Always Have Plan B
What if the software you chose for the interview stops working? Or any internet issue comes up?
Make sure you have the candidate’s details, such as email ID and contact number, so you can easily connect. Alternatively, you can conduct a phone call interview instead of a video interview in this case.
If you are working from home, the most common issue you might face is bandwidth. For example, if more than one person at your place uses the same internet connection, you may face delays or other issues. Hence, it becomes difficult to work even with video conferencing tools.
However, you can fix this issue by turning off the camera you’re using during the interview. You’ll still be able to communicate with the candidate no matter which tool you’re using.
Structure Your Remote Interview
Now here comes the challenging part. Isn’t it? Most recruiters struggle to structure the remote interview to keep things moving smoothly.
To accurately structure an interview, the basic structure should look like this:
- Part One: The Introduction
Start your interview by introducing yourself and giving a brief detail about your organization and your role in the interview process. Then put the candidate at ease with small talk, as it is important to make the candidate comfortable in the first minutes.
- Part Two: Ask Questions Which You Prepare Before The Interview
This part includes asking general questions such as your experience, why you left your previous organization, which tools and technologies you used there, etc. In this part, you will get a deep knowledge about the candidate’s soft skills such as communication skills, problem-solving skills, time management skills, and how creative a candidate is.
- Part Three: Wrapping Up
Let the candidate give you feedback about his remote interview experience and ask you questions. Explain to them about the following process and when they can expect to have an answer.
This one applies to any interview situation. Avoiding distractions work the best for those who might be doing interviews for the first time. Follow the below points:
- Keep your mobile phone on vibrate
- Put your phone on “do not disturb.” You don’t want a call transferred to you in the middle of the interview, interrupting the interview flow.
- Have your office locked or put a sticker on your door that you’re interviewing someone
- Keep a glass of water to stay hydrated
Communicate Details Clearly
While conducting remote interviews, you must provide as much information to your prospective candidate to ease their anxiety and help them prepare appropriately.
In particular, share details about the interview process, relieving uncertainty about the process’s mechanics. The information you must provide include:
- Meeting details (interview tool, meeting ID number, password, download instructions, etc).
- Whether you will be using a telephone or video call for the interview.
- Time and date of the interview.
Additionally, share who will be joining your team, what their roles are, and how they will assess their skills during the interview.
Give Feedback Quickly
As a recruiter, you might have heard about candidates saying, “We never heard back from the company after the interview.”
To enhance the candidate experience, let them know as quickly as possible via email and discreetly. Don’t let them wait for a week with no answer giving them false hopes.
Getting feedback from candidates is vital in remote interviews, which improves candidate experience to build a brand.
Remote or virtual interviews are a new norm in the corporate world. However, it will take some time to get used to it. With remote working possibly becoming a norm in the time to come, with the tips mentioned above, you will learn to conduct a structured interview effectively, which is an important segment of your overall company experience.