Technology is an ever changing, ever growing, aspect of our lives. We can’t seem to eat, sleep, work, or play without it. It makes sense with the seemingly uncontrollable evolution of technology, that it would drastically change the way HR Departments conduct their day to day business as well. With new complicated Applicant Tracking Systems and technology updates making their way into the marketplace regularly, it’s nice that some technology is simplifying a few HR practices.

If you are not already aware, please let me be the first to introduce you to video interviewing.  Video interviews are stepping up in a big way to replace both telephone interviews, and in some cases, in-person interviews as well.  There are countless new vendors that are popping up to assist HR Departments in facilitating and storing these videos. Most vendors are offering services for both recorded “survey” based interviews (where the candidate records answers to series of questions provided by the HR department; typically replacing a telephone screening) and a one-on-one interview (typically replacing one or more in-person interviews).

In an article written by Dave Zielinski, published on www.shrm.org, he provides many examples of companies utilizing video interviewing as a way to positively impact their HR budget. One example Zielinski sites is from Chesapeake Energy Corp.
“Kip Welch, director of recruitment for Chesapeake Energy Corp., a natural gas company in Oklahoma City, Okla., pays about $100 per interview hour for live video interviewing services provided by GreenJobInterview in Costa Mesa, Calif. Welch says the system saved him $400,000 in 2011 for 458 job interviews when compared against previous costs for flying candidates in.”

The finical benefit is certainly not the only one for video interviewing. If you record the videos they may also be used as a training tool for other hiring managers within your company. You now have the ability to visually explain to them how a candidate might have reacted to a certain line of questioning, or perhaps when the interviewer should have probed for more details. Recorded interviews can additionally be used to safe guard your HR Department as legal proof that the employer did nothing wrong when conducting the interview if questions arise.

While this technology has had a positive benefit on industry, you should be aware of the possible pit falls of video interviewing as well. For instance, there might be a feel of informality because the interview is conducted remotely for both the candidate and interviewers.  This, of course, can create a less than professional image for both parties.  Consider this when conducting video interviews.  Another possible issue is that the interviewer potentially looses control of the environment. Distractions, noise, and connectivity with the internet will be an issue for some interviews, and may leave you feeling like you should have your IT department on call.

Whatever your stance is on video interviewing; just remember; technology and HR practices are changing. Often times the HR department is the first line of contact the candidates have with an organization; so what do your HR practices say about your company culture?  Embrace changes in technology, but do your best to use them to the benefit of your company.