With remote work on the rise in today’s business world, interviewing and hiring workers from across the country, and even the globe,will become more common than ever before. While this transition from in-person to online interviewing takes place, conducting a remote interview may seem stressful or scary to those who have never done it before. Even for those who have, there are ‘best practice’ tips and tricks to take video interviewing skills to the next level. Below, we’ve compiled some of the top tips for conducting remote interviews to help improve your skills to secure the very best candidate for the job – no matter their geographical location.
Prepare Yourself & Your Tech
This piece of advice is most often given to job seekers before an interview, but it is equally as important for interviewers. Just as you would for an in-person interview, do your research and prepare questions that will not only answer if your candidate will be a good employee but a good remote employee. Because a certain level of trust is needed between management and off-site workers, be sure to prepare a few extra questions that give you a glimpse into your interviewees’ work ethic, historical success in remote positions, and communication style.
Just as you prepare yourself for the interview, you’ll want to prepare your tech to ensure it’s ready as well. Without doing so, you risk running into technical difficulties which could completely derail the interview, your schedule, and your impression on potential candidates. Technology failures can make your company appear unprofessional and unprepared, especially when remote employees rely so heavily on technology day-to-day. Be sure to check your internet connection, get your equipment up and running and test it out in advance to calling your interviewee for the best experience possible.
Create a Connection
While speaking face-to-face offers the benefits of reading body language and facial expressions, digital communication offers its own benefits as well. Engaging in technology-driven communication creates a more casual, stress-free environment for interviewers and interviewees to interact, making the interview process much easier for shy individuals. Luckily, remote interviews combine the best of both face-to-face and online communication throughout the interview process. You’ll want to utilize various different communication methods to create the most organic connection possible, such as emailing to set interviews up, video conferencing for the formal interview, and chat tools for more informal conversations post-interview. While there are many variations of these tools available, implementing a unified communications service will help organize your conversations with various candidates, making your job easier.
Learn to Listen
When using video conferencing tools to conduct remote interviews, demonstrating active listening can be a challenge. Because of the lack of eye contact and other body language cues with video calls, it is critical to stay focused and show you truly are listening. The keys to portraying active listening over technology are staying focused, asking questions, avoiding interrupting and recapping key points. By doing these things, you are showing your interviewee that you are engaged in what they’re saying, that you want to hear more, and that you care about their answers. Be sure to end all interviews by recapping what your prospective employee said to make them feel truly heard and leaving with a desire to join your company. After all, a bad interview can leave candidates feeling uninspired and uninterested, and technology blocking personal connection is no help to that.
In the end, remote interviews don’t have to be that much different from in-person interviews, if you’re equipped with the right tools and knowledge. By improving your listening skills and making sure your technology is ready to work as hard as you do, you’ll be one step closer to hiring the best candidates for your open positions. What other tips or rules do you follow for conducting remote interviews?