Speak Into the Camera …

Video interviewing is taking the nation’s recruiters by storm. About 63 percent of HR managers say their company conducts job interviews via video, which is a big jump from just 14 percent who said their companies did this one year ago. That’s according to a new OfficeTeam survey of 500 HR managers at U.S. companies with 20 or more employees.  Fifty three percent of the managers said their companies conduct job interviews using video technology “very often,” according to the survey, and 13 percent expect their organizations to make more-frequent use of video to meet job candidates within the next three years.

One reason for the growth in video-based interviewing could be the sheer number of vendors that specialize in this arena: HireVue, GreenJobInterview.com, ooVoo and Montage are just some of the vendors that offer products designed to make it easier for hiring managers to interview prospective employees via a webcam and high-speed internet connection. It’s a great way to get a feel for manager- and executive-level candidates without going to the trouble and expense of flying them in and putting them up for the night. However, as I noted in a story I wrote on video-based interviews a couple years ago, the process can be hard on some job candidates, particularly those who may not feel comfortable talking to a screen for what’s typically (especially these days) a very important and often-stressful moment in their lives. As Karen Friedman, a communications consultant I interviewed for the story, said, “You’re dealing with people you can see and hear but you’re not in the same room and there’s just not the same energy.”

OfficeTeam seems to recognize this, offering a series of tips for jobseekers that include the admonition to “treat the like a real interview. Approach the meeting with all the seriousness and preparation you would give to an in-person interview. This includes having questions ready and following up with a thank-you note.”