Every candidate should dress up in formal clothes for a video interview, but if you are the one in charge of the evaluation, what should you wear?
Virtual recruitment can save a company an enormous amount of time and money, but if evaluators take a lax attitude toward an online interview, most benefits will be forfeited. There are a few fashion rules to follow before, during and after a computer session.
Avoid bright colors
While every worker likes to add a bit of pizzazz to a wardrobe, on interview day, leave the neon blue tie at home. Instead, wear neutral colors like black, grey or white to provide your candidate with a sense of comfort and relaxation. Bright colors can distract an applicant and result in an inefficient interview.
Dress to impress
Remember, candidate engagement begins and ends with a first impression, so you must look your very best even if you are in charge of the hiring process. Top talent will be turned off by wrinkled clothes or a lack of professionalism.
Don't forget to groom
Personal hygiene will also come across through a video screen. For men, this means shaving or trimming a beard or hair, and for women, this means having a neat hairstyle and proper makeup.
A start-up environment can be exceptionally challenging for the executives who are in charge of growing and maintaining the business. Most burgeoning companies have limited funds to allocate toward a virtual recruitment strategy, as most available money will be diverted for advertising, client relations and savings. Therefore, some officials are left scratching their heads when they try to figure out how to attract top talent?
But should they really be worried? There are a few ways to get around new business financial humps to find qualified candidates.
Worry versus reality
It is no secret that some startups have difficulty hiring, but for specialized fields, the current market is full of experienced prospects who are dying to apply for a new position. A new survey by Silicon Valley Bank showed that 87 percent of technological startups planned to hire additional employees in 2013, according to Ere.net. However, 90 percent of the executives surveyed responded that their greatest challenge would be finding and hiring top talent. So where do they begin?
There is one advantage to using social media that many other options do not have - most social websites are free. Therefore, the profit margins for such a strategy are through the roof. If recruiters can properly pair a social media strategy with video interviewing, the sky is the limit - there are literally millions of candidates available through LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. Sustained candidate engagement will retrieve top talent and bring them past an initial point of contact, and from there, employers can set up video interviews to learn more about work history and personal experience.
Keep an open mind
A closed recruitment strategy that focuses too much on the specifics of a certain skillset is bound to be fruitless. Instead, employers must open their minds and evaluate a candidate as a whole, not just on specific training or industry experience. Unusual talents or "fresh eyes" can have an enormous effect on a startup, especially when an applicant is from a completely different field of work.
A final advantage is in the form of online interviewing software. With these tools, an organization can save time and money on the evaluation process and branch out to a wider geographic area of search. What's more, executives can close the book on certain candidates through video interviews, as all of the traditional body language and gestures will be viewable through the computer screen.
The end of May is a turbulent time for college seniors around the country. Students pack up their apartments, say goodbye to lifelong friends and head to their graduation ceremonies with a mixture of emotions, including a fair bit of uncertainty about the future and what everyone calls "the real world."
However, employers view this same timeframe with a sense of anticipation - they understand that thousands of talented individuals are about to hit the job market, and with the right virtual recruitment strategies, firms can locate and identify top talent before the summer is over. However, a successful hire is only possible with the appropriate video interviewing tools.
The numbers don't lie
Ere.net recently reported on three industry surveys that asked business leaders if they were planning to hire any college graduates. The three questionnaires - from Adecco, CareerBuilder and the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) - proved that despite recent economic hardships, many companies were hoping to hire at least one graduate for an entry-level position. About 42 percent of Adecco respondents claimed to be searching for graduate top talent, while 53 percent of CareerBuilder executives said they would be hiring, especially in the tech sector.
However, the NACE survey revealed that over 33 percent of respondents said they planned to hire less than last year, which is a double-edged sword for businesses with open positions. On one hand, fewer available roles means a larger applicant pool to draw from, and qualified personnel will be excited to interview for a well-paying job. On the other hand, corporations will be competing fiercely with one another to attract the upper tier of available applicants, and candidate engagement can be quite difficult in such a firestorm.
This is where online interviewing comes into play. With the right software and tech tools, your company can reach out to a soon-to-be graduate before their classes even end. It doesn't matter if a student goes to Northeastern University in Boston or the University of Southern California - you'll be able to evaluate students in real-time from the comfort of their apartments or dorm rooms. What's more, you'll even save time and money on expensive travel fees and accommodation expenses, and students will not have to miss any study time or classes to interview for a new job.
Online interviews will set your brand apart from the competition and enable you to identify the top student prospects during graduation season.
Many sayings start off with the phrase "You can never have too much of 'blank,'" but this idea does not translate to the hiring sector. In the professional world, employers with open positions need to find a delicate balance when reaching out to top talent because too heavy of a recruiting strategy can backfire by turning off qualified candidates.
Every company will make a few mistakes with virtual recruitment, but there is one common error that can destroy a proper campaign in minutes. If you wish to engage top talent, avoid the following temptation.
Multiple interviews for no apparent reason
The worst mistake you can make is to call in a candidate for upwards of 3-4 sessions, unless you have a specified reason. The more interviews are conducted, the more candidates are stressed - the level of uncertainty increases with each evaluation, and many candidates will wonder why the process has been drawn out for so long.
"Every job applicant understands the need for interviews, so the pain point occurs when an excessive amount are required," wrote human resources expert Dr. John Sullivan in his blog on Ere.net. "The CEO of one well-known technology firm that I once advised dictated that every candidate for every job undergo an astonishing 17 interviews."
Dr. Sullivan went on to list certain "pain points" that candidates face when entertaining multiple interviews, including added stress, missed work time, lost wages and excessive travel. In addition, many candidates might feel like they are failing in their attempts to come across as qualified workers, and repetition could lead to the temptation to embellish certain facts and experience. Dishonesty is not a desired trait, but with an excessive amount of interviews, a candidate might unknowingly slip up due to the high-stress environment that is being created.
Luckily, online interviewing is exempt from much of the stress of a traditional face-to-face session. For example, video interviews typically last about 20-30 minutes, and candidates can participate from the comfort of their own homes or offices. This means that they will not face many of the pain points listed above, so a few additional sessions will not do much harm. From an employer's standpoint, a company will not have to allocate any funds toward travel and accommodation fees, which can be instrumental during a busy fiscal quarter.
Use video interviewing software to avoid the pitfalls brought on by too many candidate evaluations.
A job fair is the perfect opportunity for both employers and potential job applicants. Companies have access to hundreds, if not thousands, of talented professionals, and these recruits have the opportunity to hand their paper resumes to human representatives instead of blindly applying on a job board. In addition, specific questions can be answered by corporate officials, and by signing up for a mailing list, a candidate can learn about future opportunities.
However, employers sometimes receive thousands of business cards, email addresses and resumes - how are they supposed to keep track of all of this information, especially when it comes time to schedule online interviews? The answer is simple - some social media sites are offering great new tools to track and identify top talent.
LinkedIn unveils new features
Ere.net reported on a new tool called "CheckIn" which was recently released by the social media giant at a Sydney conference. While the full features will not be available until July 2013, the potential benefits of the service have many experts excited about easier candidate tracking. CheckIn allows recruiters and employers to manage email campaigns and direct messaging to applicants who give their information at trade show booths, and the entire initial evaluation process is highly refined.
LinkedIn's Talent Blog explained that candidates are able to enter their information in a few simple actions. A welcome screen will be displayed on a computer, tablet or mobile device, and a person can then click to access CheckIn. Candidates then access their LinkedIn accounts by entering a name and email address (and optional phone number). Finally, they answer customizable areas-of-interest questions that the recruiter can adjust based on specific entry requirements. After these tasks are completed, representatives at the booth will have an immediate, complete picture of the person who filled out the information.
This makes the whole concept of video interviewing much easier. With the right LinkedIn identification, employers will be able to narrow down an applicant pool to just a few talented individuals. Then, they can use online interviewing software to reach out to candidates, even if they are in remote locations. What's more, these candidates can be evaluated quickly because any inconsistencies will jump out immediately. Finally, an incredible amount of time and money will be saved if corporations utilize the appropriate video interviewing software.
The global world created by the rise of the internet is an odd place at times. For example, the silly YouTube video "Gangnam Style" has been viewed by over a billion people - the current population of the world, according to World Bank data, is around seven billion. This means that a seventh of the Earth's population has seen South Korean musician Psy dance surrounded by horses.
No one, not even Psy, could have predicted the incredible success of that single video, and the same uncertainty surrounds hiring strategies. If you are an employer with an open position that must be filled quickly, you need to make sure you are familiar with all of the current industry trends. Read on to discover a few of the subjects that are making headlines in 2013.
The iPhone didn't even exist before 2007 - as the product approaches its sixth anniversary, few people can argue what a revolutionary effect the smartphone has had on the entire world. However, dozens of competitors have popped up, and now the market is saturated with Android phones and Samsung gadgets. Bring-your-own-device (BYOD) is prevalent in the professional sector, and many candidates use their phones for just about everything, up to and including applying for jobs.
As a recruiter, it is your task to hit these potential applicants where it matters most - right on their smartphones. While most phones have browsers that can access traditional webpages, it might be prudent to invest in a mobile-optimized corporate site. This way, a job position and application portal can be customized for viewing on a mobile device. Top talent will be impressed by a streamlined, efficient mobile page, and if they can send their resumes with a few taps of the screen, you should receive plenty of inquiries.
Active versus passive recruiting
Active recruiting refers to pursuing top talent when a position is open, but passive recruiting refers to candidate engagement when there may not be a specific role free. In 2013, many recruiters are creating shortlists of candidates for the future because if executives categorize top talent, it will be much easier to find the right fit when the time comes.
"In the traditional form of recruiting, companies would look to fill a given position at a certain time with a specific individual," wrote Steve Miranda, managing director at Cornell University's Center for Advanced HR Studies, in his blog on Ere.net. "Nowadays, companies are saying, 'Hey, we know the kinds of people who thrive here and we'd like to chat with you, even if you're not currently interested in us."
Finally, traditional evaluation practices are losing steam as new technology surmounts the challenges of the past. Online interviewing is at the forefront of this trend - with the right software, you can conduct interviews with remote candidates even if they are located halfway across the world. This saves you all sorts of time and money in the long run, as you will not have to pay for travel fares and accommodations.
Americans are well-known for their penchant for instant gratification. The rise of the fast food industry alone proves that many U.S. citizens prefer to have products and services delivered to them at a moment's notice, but unfortunately, this is a trait that cannot transfer to the hiring sector.
A proper relationship with a candidate is built through hard work, a specialized content strategy and other unique virtual recruitment methods. It is impossible to find top talent immediately - instead, an even, well-planned approach will help you discover the best potential fit for an open position.
A relationship begins with a first impression that is generated through an initial phone call or email. Social media outlets and online job boards are your best friends when trying to find top talent, and with a little research on LinkedIn or Monster, you should be able to at least identify a few prospective candidates.
A phone call is preferable to an email, but many top candidates do not list their personal telephone numbers online due to the risk of spam and telemarketing. Therefore, your initial move will likely be in the form of an email or instant message. Be careful when you send this inquiry - it should be tailored to the specific individual and never sent from a corporate email address. Always convey a sense of humanism - maybe mention previous work experience that you viewed on LinkedIn, or perhaps discuss a sports team in the candidate's metro area.
Once you have broached the topic of employment and received official applications, it is time to begin thinking about calling in a few people for interviews. However, this no longer means flying remote candidates across the country and putting them up in a hotel for a few days. In fact, even the telephone has become obsolete in the face of modern technology - video interviewing has all of the benefits of traditional evaluation practices, and it does not carry the expenses that were associated with it in the past.
Any inconsistencies should jump out to you during a video session. Remember, treat your candidates with respect - they are more than just paper resumes, and an online interview is a chance for you to put a human face on your corporation and project a personable image that will resonate with top talent.
As with any sales position, it is your responsibility to ultimately close on a candidate and hire the best person for a specialized role. In this regard, video interviewing can also be your friend - it is much more efficient to negotiate salary, benefits and other perks face-to-face as opposed to over the telephone or through email. In addition, this type of conversation can happen whenever you wish - you should conduct as many follow-up evaluations as possible to ensure you truly are hiring top talent.
Social media, virtual recruitment and video interviewing help build a solid candidate relationship over time - are you being patient enough to identify and develop top talent?
The fluctuating job market can create all sorts of headaches for professional recruiters and employers with open positions, and the current state of affairs is causing plenty of drama in the hiring sector.
ADP, an HR services corporation, recently released its monthly report for April 2013, and the results are not very good.
"Job growth appears to be slowing in response to very significant fiscal headwinds," said Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody's Analytics, according to Ere.net. "Tax increases and government spending cuts are beginning to hit the job market. Job growth has slowed across all industries and most significantly among companies that employ between 20 and 499 workers."
According to the research, businesses were hiring for 119,000 jobs in April 2013, and this number was revised heavily from initial statistics that suggested around 150,000 jobs. As far as April goes, employers with fewer than 500 workers only added 26,000 jobs, a huge decline from the 112,000 jobs that were added by this demographic in December 2012.
In other industries, trade and transportation added 29,000 positions in April, professional and business services added 20,000, and construction added 15,000, according to USA Today. The manufacturing arena suffered, however, cutting 10,000 jobs.
"That 50-employee threshold is important and it feels like health care reform is having an impact," said Zandi. "If you look at the slowdown in job growth in the last few months, it's primarily among companies that are small."
But even if you own a small company, you can still use virtual recruitment to reach out to top talent.
Job claims fall
Despite the lack of new jobs, the number of people filing for jobless claims reached a five-year low in April 2013, reported CNN Money. On January 6, 2007, the number of jobless claims held steady at 330,000. On April 27, 2013, this figure was at 324,000, over 300,000 units lower than the 670,000 high experienced on March 28, 2009.
In March 2013, 11.7 million people were still listed as unemployed, and this demographic group represents a tempting target for employers with open positions. However, you must approach a hiring strategy with aplomb if you wish to attract and maintain top talent.
LinkedIn is your best friend for scrutinizing the millions of unemployed workers who list their resumes on the internet. If you create a job posting and specifically mention that it is open to anyone with the required skill set, regardless of whether they are currently employed or not, you should receive a flood of applications.
From there, you should narrow down a pool of candidates with video interviewing and effective virtual recruitment practices. After an initial messaging session on LinkedIn, you can schedule an online interview with the applicants who provided the best responses. This will save you an incredible amount of time and money, as the traditional costs associated with physical evaluations will be eliminated. Hotel, travel and food expenses will be a thing of the past - you can use the saved funds on further digital marketing strategies.
A problem that many employers experience is viewing their candidates as paper resumes instead of actual people. Recruiters believe they can simply reach out to a person and jump right into business, forgetting that just like every other relationship, the hiring process must be consummated gradually.
However, online interviewing and phone evaluations do not need to be treated as a cold call - you can use virtual recruitment tactics to establish a connection with candidates before you ever speak face-to-face. Read on to learn about some common methods to achieve this goal.
Nancy Parks, a human resources and organizational development expert, recently touched upon the "initial rapport" phase of the hiring process in her blog on Ere.net. She stresses the importance of "doing your homework" before reaching out to a candidate - this involves using social media websites like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn to create a complete picture of an applicant's personality traits and hobbies.
"Establishing rapport begins even before you dial. If you can demonstrate that you know something about the prospect, it helps quickly build rapport," wrote Parks. "Perhaps you have a mutual acquaintance. Or maybe you have specific industry knowledge that positions you as someone who really might understand their needs. Provide this information very early on...during your introduction. When prospects sense your interest in them, they appreciate that you won't waste their time with unnecessary fact-finding questions, making you sound like any other person pitching."
Facebook might show that the candidate is a New York Jets fan, while Twitter might reveal that the person enjoys liberal politics. LinkedIn is normally used for professional purposes, but with a little digging, you might discover that an applicant had a series of prior jobs that are very applicable to the open position. But remember, don't overdo it - rambling about unprofessional topics will only detract from a great initial impression.
Keep your promises
This is an essential step when scheduling a phone or virtual interview. If you say you are going to call, email or meet with a candidate at 10 a.m., be prompt. Any delay can cause an applicant to be unnerved, and a lack of response to queries can quickly infuriate even the calmest people. It is completely unprofessional to ignore a candidate for any reason, so ensure that you take the steps necessary to communicate effectively and clearly. If care is not taken, top talent could be driven directly to the competition, which is every employer's worst nightmare.
While phone evaluations have their benefits, if you are really looking to get to know a candidate, you should go with online interviews. These unique sessions can help you put a face to a paper resume, and you can also provide a human contact point for your organization. Plus, you'll save all sorts of time and money on the travel expenses and hotel fees associated with traditional interviewing practices.
There are many advantages to hosting a virtual interview - are you utilizing video technology to the best of your ability?
A social media campaign is an essential part of a successful hiring strategy in the modern, digital-driven world - infographics are posted and linked through Twitter, accompanying videos are uploaded to YouTube and specialized content and job descriptions are broadcast through LinkedIn. However, a recent shift in virtual recruitment has caused LinkedIn to spring to the forefront of many employers' hiring practices, and new reports are proving that this social media outlet is becoming one of the most popular websites in the world.
A report on social media activity by industry analyst Bullhorn showed that 98 percent of the recruiters surveyed used social media for a hiring campaign in 2012. Numerous other trends were also identified, and many have far-reaching consequences in the hiring sector.
Data also showed that in 2012, nearly two-thirds of respondents (64 percent) used only LinkedIn for their social recruitment campaigns. This is a shocking number compared to 2011 figures, when less than one-half (48 percent) of employers used an exclusively LinkedIn plan. According to the research, 2012 job postings received more clicks and views than similar Facebook and Twitter content combined.
In addition, just 12 percent of respondents were linked across the "big three" social media networks (Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter). While this preference for LinkedIn could be due to a variety of reasons, the fact remains that LinkedIn is generally more effective because of its association with the professional world. Facebook is viewed as a purely social network, and although Facebook recruiting has been proven to work, it still lingers in the back pocket of most corporations due to the stigmas associated with the website. Twitter is much the same - it has evolved into more of an amateur news network than a recruiting tool, as many turn to Twitter for breaking stories, celebrity gossip and other opinionated news.
LinkedIn has trumped these three on the basis of virtual recruitment - people believe that they need to portray their professional lives as attractively as possible, and employers believe LinkedIn represents the best chance for satisfied hiring when "gambling" on a social media policy. This is because employers believe Twitter and Facebook provide a lower return on investment - only 16.7 percent of recruiters reported a successful hire through Facebook, and only 12.7 percent reported a similar placement through Twitter.
Social media is only as effective as the interviewing technology that accompanies it, and new developments are sparking a shift toward video interviewing and similar online tactics. Online interviews provide the same benefits as a traditional face-to-face evaluations without the hassle and costs. For example, imagine if you used LinkedIn to create a shortlist of 10 individuals, but you could not narrow the list down based on resumes alone. The remaining applicants could each be scheduled for a half-hour video interview, and you could complete your initial evaluations in a single afternoon. From there, you could invite your preferred candidates for further scrutiny.