The past few years have seen a lot of change in the world of digital interviewing. Since the pandemic, digital interviewing has become more common. In fact, this approach to recruiting has become the norm. New technology lets employers interview candidates in a more efficient and convenient manner, saving both time and money. What’s more, digital interviewing can help identify potential candidates who may not have previously been open to traveling to do an in-person interview.
Pre-pandemic, 22% of employers incorporated video interviews into their interview process and as of January 2021, 79% are now conducting video interviews regularly. So far in 2022, video interviews decreased by roughly 10% versus 2021, however, the number still represents a net increase of 57% from pre-pandemic times.
There is a lot of good that has come from the recent shift in how companies recruit and hire, including:
- Digital interviewing creates a larger pool of candidates to support diversity, equity, and inclusion goals.
The digital interviewing approach allows companies to conduct interviews from anywhere in the world, which is beneficial when looking for specific niche skill sets. As diversity and inclusion goals are at the forefront of many companies’ hiring initiatives, using a digital interview approach can be extremely helpful in achieving these goals.
A large part of why some organizations are struggling to find a diverse workforce is that they don't have a large enough pool of potential candidates. An in-person-only process focuses on applicants who live in the immediate area, which means you're likely getting applications from the same people. Leveraging the online interview process helps hiring managers speak to candidates from all over the country, creating a larger candidate pool to choose from, and boosting connections with people from different backgrounds and cultures.
- This new approach has created a nimbler process for companies and candidates.
Many senior leaders are realigning their hiring plans more quickly than ever before due to economic uncertainty and budget constraints. According to Gartner, 54% of organizations have delayed candidates' start dates in the last year.
Efficient candidate management is essential due to these changes along with a highly-competitive job market; recruiters and hiring managers need to manage the candidate pipeline closely to avoid damaging to their reputations. A well-built and thoughtful virtual process can provide clear and transparent communication to candidates throughout the recruitment process and keep good recruits interested longer than the competition.
- New technology and platforms built with the digital interview process in mind make the hiring process easier for both companies and candidates.
By using online tools such as chatbots, video, and social media platforms, employers can easily assess a candidate's skills and capabilities. Beyond that, candidates can use digital interviewing to showcase their skills and abilities in an efficient and engaging way. Overall, digital interviewing has made the hiring process more streamlined and efficient for both sides of the equation.
Many companies have invested in a suite of tools that make recruitment easy, even during difficult times. Adaptive features, like online scheduling, and navigating technology challenges like firewalls and poor internet connections, have become a priority. Calendar synchronization has also been vital because reminders about scheduled interviews can reduce the number of no-shows. Efficiency efforts have also been focused on automating manual tasks, particularly in the early stages of the hiring process like screening applicants' CVs. While some employers simply digitized their existing activities, others took advantage of the COVID-19 pandemic to rework their processes entirely to include the hiring process, onboarding, and evaluation.
Technology advances allow job seekers to find specific information about a job, apply online, schedule an interview, and accept the job in a matter of days. Now, in-demand candidates can do everything from home, with no travel expenses and added stress. This is why 21% of job seekers are more likely to accept a video interview invitation than an in-person meeting.
- A virtual interview can provide greater insight into the personality of the candidate.
It can be easier in many situations to see the "human" side of a candidate through a virtual interview versus an onsite interview. The pandemic blurred the lines between home and work for most of us. Through the lens of a computer, the candidate’s authentic life is now on display, whether it be the family pictures on the wall behind them or a view of how clean or messy they keep their workspace.
Some recruiters believe they now have more personal conversations at the start of an interview, as people naturally chat about common struggles like childcare and juggling the "new normal." As both IQ and EQ are vital in hiring strong leaders, demonstrating empathy and an understanding of oneself and others’ emotions across the digital divide is an even better test of the depth of a candidate's capabilities. Some recruiters believe that candidates are more confident and comfortable in their own workspace, providing a more genuine interview process.
Even with as far as we have all come with the digital interviewing process, keep in mind that there is still an art to getting the balance right between enabling maximum efficiency and optimizing the experience for both parties. As hybrid offices and remote ways of working increasingly become the norm for managers and leaders, focusing on how to maximize the virtual interviewing process is now a top priority for growing companies. Savvy hiring managers and recruiters are learning to leverage the benefits to gain a competitive edge in their hiring process.
Bous, Savanna. “4 Ways Job Interviews Have Changed since the Start of the Pandemic.” Fast Company. Fast Company, February 10, 2022.
“Job Interview Statistics.” Job description library. Accessed April 1, 2022.
“Virtual Interviews to Hire Candidates during COVID.” Gartner. Accessed April 1, 2022.