What Are Self-Guided Interviews?

How they work and how they can save recruiters days of effort each month.

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What Are Self-Guided Interviews?

With the number of challenges facing the modern recruiter, automated tools have become a necessity. Of course, traditional interview strategies still serve their purpose. The sun has set on their time. To stay competitive, recruiters everywhere have turned to the new wave of tech that came in the last few years.

This new tech includes the self-guided interview — an asynchronous solution to interviewing. It begins with the recruiter pre-recording interview questions for their candidates. The questions are then simultaneously shared with potentially hundreds of candidates at the push of a button. Said candidates are then able to engage with the interview process at a time of their convenience. Ultimately, this saves both the candidate and the recruiter from the arduous task of scheduling during the initial interview process.

What’s more, using a platform like Qualifi, you can review, filter and organize interviews for better team collaboration when making vital hiring decisions. This allows recruiting teams to sort potential candidates and the best talent to rise to the top of the screening process. As a result, you reach the best talent faster and before your competitors.

And this speed is important. According to Forbes, the best candidates are off the market in as little as 10 days. In recruitment, that is an incredibly small window of opportunity. A faster time-to-hire is the only way to make that window, and that’s exactly what self-guided interviews offer.

So, when you’re looking to build a faster and more efficient hiring process, consider turning to self-guided interviews to not only reach the best talent before your competitors but to engage them on their terms.

Build a high-volume recruiting engine that drives itself

One-way Interview Meaning

Self-guided interviews are also popularly known as one-way interviews. But what is the meaning of a one-way interview? You already know that they’re an asynchronous interview format. However, they’re much more than that. They introduce automation into the interview process, the most time-consuming stage of hiring. In fact, scheduling live interviews alone, according to Yello, takes recruiters up 30 minutes to 2 hours per candidate. That means it could take recruiters upwards of 10 hours to schedule 5 interviews!

One-way interviews offer an opportunity to eliminate this time sink almost entirely and allow recruiters to focus on the most important facets of their role. A recorded interview can be delivered to candidates with no scheduling required. Rather, it’s a convenient approach for both recruiters and candidates. Recruiters can interview 24/7, and candidates have access to interview hours outside of the typical 9 to 5. Qualifi’s own research found that this flexibility even brings in 75.5% more responses. That means you get the added bonus of having fewer candidates ghost your interview process.

One-way interviews are available as both phone interviews and video interviews. Although both have their merits in terms of maintaining consistency and human connection while automating the interview process. However, that’s where their similarities end. Asynchronous video interviews fundamentally fail to mitigate bias, offer accessibility, or even adequately speed up the interview process. Contrast this with phone interviews that remove potential visual bias from the equation and only require candidates to own a phone - something that nearly the entire US population has access to. Plus, audio interviews can be screened in as little as 5 minutes.

As such, when choosing a one-way interview solution for your hiring process, consider the option that’s ideal for a fairer screening process and is ultimately suited for high-volume hiring — the one-way phone interview.

One-way Interview Tips

As with any powerful tool, effectiveness depends on how you use it. Even the strongest recruitment software will fail if mishandled. That’s why we’re going to take this time to go over some quick and easy one-way interview tips.

Due to its automated nature, it’s tempting to use generic questions for your one-way interviews. However, this is quite the opposite of what you should do. Generic questions will only diminish one of the best benefits of one-way interviews - saving time. Focus on the important questions. Only include what is most pertinent to finding your ideal candidate. Questions such as “Why are you interested in this job?” serves little purpose during the screening phase. That is best saved for the second interview.

Rather than generic questions, focus on discovering candidates’ soft and hard skills alike. These are the skills that will separate average candidates from the best.

Hard skills refer to a candidate’s technical skills, the talents they need to perform the day-to-day demands of their role. Software engineers need to know how to code. Data analysts need to understand databases. It is necessary for screening questions to ensure that candidates possess must-have skills.

Then there’s the matter of soft skills. These are significantly less tangible. Regardless, they’re considered by 92% of talent professionals to be equally important according to LinkedIn. Soft skills relate to skills such as emotional intelligence, problem-solving, and conflict resolution. How does the candidate handle work under pressure? What is their general attitude to work?

By their nature, soft skills are harder to identify but are nonetheless possible to uncover through one-way screening interviews. For example, consider including questions on hypothetical scenarios. Whether the scenario is an interdepartmental conflict or an unfamiliar problem, ask your candidates how they would solve the problem. How they answer the question will reveal much how they will fit into your organization.

One-Way Interview Questions

You’ve most likely noticed a trend by now. The effectiveness of your screening will be highly dependent on your one-way interview questions. Although designing these questions can be intimidating at first, it is only a matter of adopting traditional questions for a modern format. So, let’s take a look at some one-way interview questions and answers that you can use to great effect.

  • What makes you right for this role? - This open-ended question gives the candidate an opportunity to sell themselves, and put their best qualities forward. Ideally, the candidate should respond with information pertaining to their hard skills as they relate to the role in question.

  • How would you deal with this hypothetical situation? - Hypothetical questions prompt candidates to demonstrate their soft skills whether they be problem-solving or conflict resolution. Hypothetical situations are also an opportunity to demonstrate hard skills such as utilizing software to solve a problem.

  • What do you know about our company and place in the industry? - Many job seekers trawl job boards and apply for as many jobs as possible. And there’s nothing wrong with that. However, a candidate should come to the screening with an understanding of what your company does and what to expect. This particular question also gives the candidate an opportunity to share their knowledge of the industry.

  • What is your attitude towards work? - This question has two sides. One to judge the work ethic of the candidate. The other is to determine if their approach to work meshes well with the business’s culture.

These are only a handful of questions you can utilize in a one-way interview. When designing your own, keep in mind the asynchronous nature of this interaction, and design your questions to be clear and concise. Long-winded, multiple-faceted questions risk confusing candidates in a medium in which they cannot ask for clarification.

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