One-Way Interviews: Navigating the Future of Hiring
One-way interviews are a type of video interview where the candidates record answers to interview questions and raters independently evaluate the answers at a later time. When used instead of screening interviews, they can streamline the hiring process while offering flexibility for both candidates and recruiters.
Learn how using one-way interviews can improve your recruitment process.
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What Is a One-Way Interview?
A one-way interview is a structured interview that invites candidates to record short video responses to predetermined interview questions on any device. Unlike a live interview, there is no interviewer present. A hiring manager or recruiter reviews and rates the applicants’ video submissions asynchronously using an interview scorecard.
One-way interviews are also called pre-recorded interviews, on-demand interviews, self-paced interviews, or asynchronous interviews. They are primarily used as a screening step because they boast benefits that phone interviews don’t offer.
How Do One-Way Interviews Work?
Interview Setup: Before the process, the recruiting team sets up the interview on a digital platform, choosing the number and order of questions to be asked, preparation time limits, response time limits, and whether candidates can review and/or re-record their responses before submitting them. It is a best practice to ensure all interview settings and parameters are consistent for all applicants.
Candidate Participation: The candidates receive an invitation to access the interview and are given a deadline for submission. They can choose to record and submit their responses at any time before the deadline.
Response Recording: Candidates are shown the questions one at a time. If the process allows, candidates may have the ability to re-record answers multiple times before submitting them. This format helps some candidates by reducing the stress of on-the-spot answering.
Submission and Review: Once candidates submit their videos, the hiring team can review the responses at their convenience. This asynchronous approach allows for more flexibility in the scheduling process and can allow some hiring teams to screen a larger applicant pool.
Evaluation and Scoring: Raters use an interview scorecard to assess the candidates' responses. Some processes may even include multiple raters to get a more thorough evaluation of a candidate at the screening stage. This structured approach can help in reducing biases and ensuring a fair evaluation process.
Decision Making: Based on the video responses and evaluations, the hiring team decides which candidates to move forward in the recruitment process.
What Are the Benefits of On-Demand Video Interviews?
Benefits for Hiring Teams
During a screening call, sticking to the script, keeping the conversation on-topic, and staying neutral can be tough. On-demand interviewing simplifies screening so you can focus on assessing the candidate’s answers.
Setting up the process once, and then reviewing and rating videos requires less time than conducting screening interviews.
No more scheduling phone screens. On-demand interviews free up time for other tasks and offer raters more flexibility.
Easily conduct structured interviews
Ask every applicant the same questions, in the same order, in the same way.
Accommodate remote candidates
Eliminate time zone hassles with on-demand interviewing and expand your candidate pool.
Multiple raters can review, rate, and collectively decide on a candidate's progress remotely.
Minimize hiring bias
Built-in interview guides standardize and streamline the process, leading to better interview compliance.
Automate repetitive tasks
Reduce manual tasks like candidate communication with automated reminders and notifications.
Build a talent pool
If a company has multiple job openings, different hiring managers can evaluate a candidate without reinterviewing.
Allows raters to replay answers
Avoid relying on memory. Review interviews as many times as needed to ensure accurate ratings.
Benefits for Candidates
On-demand interviews can help you offer a positive candidate experience, which is what dictates your ability to keep job seekers engaged throughout the hiring process.
Offer flexibility and convenience
Candidates complete the interview where and when is ideal for them, allowing them to balance their job search with their other commitments.
Save time and money on travel-related costs
Remove barriers for candidates who don’t have the time or resources to attend every stage of the interview process in person.
Create an opportunity to showcase skills
On-demand interviews can offer preparation time and resubmissions, allowing candidates to showcase their strengths with less stress.
Keep candidates up-to-date
Automated candidate communications allow you to keep applicants engaged and informed at every step of the process.
The Best One-Way Video Interview Questions
To ensure the most effective use of one-way interviews, it's crucial to focus on two types of questions: knockout questions and those that help qualify the candidate’s experience, skills, and fit for the role.
Knockout questions are designed to immediately identify candidates who do not meet the essential criteria for the position. These questions help streamline the recruitment process by filtering out applicants who lack key qualifications or requirements early on.
In addition to knockout questions, it's equally important to quickly explore whether the candidate's experience and qualifications are aligned to the role. These questions should help draw out specific examples of past work and accomplishments that are directly relevant to the role.
Lastly, questions that assess a candidate's alignment with the organization's direction and values are vital. These questions help determine if the candidate is not only capable of performing the job but also a good fit for the company's strategic objectives and ethos.
If you use this strategy, you’ll be able to curate an optimized question set to help improve your quality of hire.
Top tip for further improving one-way interview questions
Get input on your questions from industrial and organizational psychologists and diversity, equity, and inclusion specialists. These professionals can refine interview questions to mitigate bias, ensure validity, and enhance inclusivity and fairness in the hiring process.
Tips for One-Way Video Interviewing
Showcase Your Employer Brand With Video-Based Questions
Using video-based questions in place of or in addition to text-based questions sets clear expectations about your corporate culture and expresses your brand’s personality. Adding a message from upper management or a genuine testimonial from an employee allows your organization to showcase the job and work environment.
Video-based questions are also a great way to make the interview process feel more personalized and interesting for applicants.
The importance of employer brand
According to Ceridian’s research, maintaining a well-defined employer brand online and throughout the hiring process can help your organization attract and compete for top talent.
of people would consider changing jobs to work at a company with an excellent corporate reputation
of HR professionals surveyed said recruitment is becoming more like marketing
of active job seekers are likely to apply for a job if the employer actively manages its employer brand
Test Your Interview Settings
Interview software allows you to customize everything: the prep time, the questions, the length of responses, and whether or not applicants can re-record their answers. Test your interview to make sure the instructions make sense and confirm if you are setting realistic time expectations based on the types of questions you are asking.
Use Data-Driven Insights to Improve Your One-Way Interviews
Study reports from your interviewing system to see what you can learn from them. They often include detailed descriptions of the status of each candidate, individual activity logs, the candidate’s rating compared to others, and more. Use this data to gauge progress.
Debunking Myths About One-Way Video Interview Discrimination
One-way interviews are still hotly debated despite widespread adoption. There are many myths surrounding video interviews. It’s always important to speak to the facts since there are many ways to implement one-way interviews.
As you’ll see, there’s no reason to hesitate if you are considering using this interview format for hiring.
Myth: Self-Paced Interviews Introduce Bias
Fact: Some argue that a self-paced interview can introduce hiring bias, especially the types of bias related to seeing the candidate. In actuality, self-paced interviews mitigate some of the biases that adversely affect diversity-identified groups. If your process is properly structured and your raters are trained correctly, a candidate’s video setup should not affect the ratings.
By standardizing the questions and interview scorecards, keeping them competency-focused, and removing the interviewer, everyone is treated equitably, thanks to a proven process.
Myth: Asynchronous Interviews Are Discriminatory
Fact: Asynchronous interviews promote inclusion and accessibility. They can help widen the candidate pool by eliminating resource, geographic, and scheduling barriers for some. Additionally, these interviews can be tailored for greater accessibility through features like re-recording options and adjustable preparation times. The technology behind pre-recorded interviews integrates seamlessly with existing accessibility tools, further facilitating an inclusive recruitment process.
Myth: On-Demand Interviews Harm Candidate Experience
Fact: While it’s true that on-demand interviews remove the opportunity to interact with someone from the organization in the initial screening step, there’s no need to rely on recruiters to make a great first impression with candidates.
Here are some ways to create a positive candidate experience using on-demand screening:
- Explain that structured one-way interviews are fairer as they enable more candidates to participate in the screening process.
- Use engaging introduction, conclusion, and question videos featuring key personnel from your organization to personalize the process.
- Keep candidates informed throughout the process with automated SMS and email updates.
- Personalize automated notifications with images, GIFs, and tailored messages to highlight your employer brand.
Applicant attitudes toward asynchronous interviews
How do asynchronous interviews compare to other screening selection techniques in the eyes of candidates?
A 2016 Frontiers study found that pre-conceived ideas about video interviewing, and individual characteristics and personality traits, impact how people feel about pre-recorded interviews.
People who feel stress due to being challenged by an unfamiliar format or who might be concerned about the safety of their data will have less favorable attitudes toward a video assessment.
Asynchronous interviews landed in the same favorability rating range as other non-interactive procedures like personality inventories or cognitive tests.
Perceived usefulness and ease of use were significant predictors of applicant attitudes toward this type of screening interview.
It can be beneficial for candidate confidence to provide more preparation time, as well as the ability to review and resubmit answers. Additionally, you can inform candidates that the videos that are captured in an asynchronous interview are just as safe as data that’s stored in an ATS.
Make it clear that even though candidates don’t have an interaction live, they are guaranteed that someone is interacting with their interview. This is the biggest difference between human-rated asynchronous video interviews and personality inventories or cognitive tests.
Choose an interview software provider that offers applicant tech support and a simple interface for candidates and raters. Explain somewhere in the process that asynchronous interviews guarantee all candidates an interview, so no one is filtered out before getting a chance to be on camera.
Frequently asked questions
What Is An AI Video Interview?
AI interview software conducts one-way interviews and then uses AI to evaluate candidates. This interview format is typically used to screen for entry-level positions or in high-volume hiring scenarios.
These interviews can be AI-led, where the AI scores the interviews based on inputs and algorithms and advances candidates, or AI-influenced, where it provides ratings and recommendations.
There’s also human-led, AI-augmented interviewing (also known as interview intelligence) that assesses the interviewers, not the candidates. In this instance, AI is used to provide feedback on, and improve, the process.
As you can tell, not all one-way interviews get reviewed by AI. Most organizations disclose the use of AI in recruiting to candidates at some point in the interview, but it’s not always clear.
How Do I Prepare a One-Way Virtual Interview?
Get familiar with the structured process and how to use the software, read the digital interview guide, and step back and look at this as an opportunity to conduct a more textural screening interview.
Why Do Organizations Conduct One-Way Interviews?
As we’ve already covered, there are several benefits to conducting one-way interviews but here are some other reasons:
- Speeds up the process of approving or advancing candidates without requiring multiple interviews
- Allows candidates to present their best selves both because of the settings and the ability to do it when the time is right for them
- Removes some anxiety candidates may have about doing the interview in an unfamiliar location
- Assess candidates for current and future opportunities in a single interview by keeping the interview on file
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