Virtual interviews are becoming remarkably popular with modern recruiting teams. Recruiters across industries are turning to them to meet the demands of the modern talent market — candidate-driven, efficiency-focused, and fast. Virtual interviews help with it all as a powerful screening tool.
Also known as an asynchronous interview, virtual interviews require a recruiter to record an entire interview and send it to each candidate. Candidates then reply with their side of the interview on their time. It’s that simple.
Today’s asynchronous interviews fall into two categories: phone interviews and video interviews. Both have their merits in that they provide consistency and human connection while automating much of the hiring process. However, phone interviews clearly come out on top. Virtual video interviews fundamentally fail to mitigate bias or offer an easily accessible interview. Audio, on the other hand, does both. Phone interviews remove potential visual biases and only require candidates to own a cell phone - something that most of the population has access to.
Then there’s the matter of review times. Video interviews require the complete focus of the recruiter in a format that’s consistently longer. Audio interviews can be screened in as little as 5 minutes while the recruiter attends to other role-critical tasks as if they’re listening to a podcast while they’re working.
And when you put this all together — review time, bias mitigation, and accessibility — you find that video interviews are ill-suited for high-volume hiring, which requires all of these qualities. Phone interviews can be used to screen hundreds of candidates in a relatively short period of time. However, virtual phone interviews do that and more, streamlining the interview process.
But what do we mean by a virtual interview? As we established, they’re an asynchronous interview format, but there’s more to it than that. Scheduling live interviews alone, according to Yello, takes 30 minutes to 2 hours per candidate. That creates a serious time sink at a time when recruiters are more pressed for time than ever.
On-demand interviews offer recruiters a way to eliminate this time sink and focus on what they do best - recruiting. Once recorded, an on-demand interview can be delivered to candidates instantly with no scheduling required. Rather, candidates are able to approach the process at a time of their convenience, even outside of the typical interview hours of 9 to 5 — that’s why they’re also often known as self-paced interviews. Qualifi’s own research found that this flexibility in the interview process brings in 75.5% more responses.
As such, the virtual interview is a medium to empower both recruiters and candidates.
In the same way that on-premise software changed business forever at the turn of the millennium, SaaS has done the same in the last few years. There are now numerous online interview platforms online to choose from, and many of us can’t imagine a world without them. It is likely that we will see this trend to continue for years to come as software solutions continue to evolve - changing how we recruit in the process.
According to Yello, 51% of recruiters already use some type of interview scheduling software, with 26% more considering doing the same. This is no wonder. The interview process takes up two-thirds of recruiters' time, with much of that being spent on scheduling alone. Employers that fail to adopt will consistently find themselves behind their competition and missing out on the best talent on the market.
To keep pace with this innovation, many recruiters have turned to virtual interview software to keep up with the times. This software is simple and easy to use while offering staggering benefits in the process. With a few clicks, hiring teams can comfortably increase their candidate pipeline and screen those candidates faster than ever before.
There are many benefits of the virtual interview that has made it so popular with today’s recruiters. All of which help teams stay on top of recruiting both in terms of efficiency and ROI.
The first of these we will discuss here is how virtual interviews speed up time-to-hire — the time between a candidate applying for a position and accepting an offer. According to Zippia, a vacancy costs $98 per day. With an average vacancy taking 42 days to fill, the average cost to fill a position is $4,129. Shortening this time, therefore, reduces the overall cost of recruitment. Much of this time is spent on the interview process on its own. As we discussed earlier, the interview phase takes up two-thirds of the overall hiring time, and that is largely just spent on scheduling. Virtual interviews eliminate the need for interview scheduling entirely while the recorded audio format speeds the screening process of individual interviews.
Then there’s the matter of accessibility. Many recruiters use video interviews, but those come with an inherent flaw. Video interviews assume that your ideal candidate has access to a microphone, camera, and appropriate space to conduct said interview. That eliminates a lot of the labor pool, even for those looking for remote work. However, virtual phone interviews are available to almost everyone (97% of Americans own some kind of cell phone). That means when you adopt an on-demand phone strategy, you make the hiring process accessible to 97% of the population. What’s more, the asynchronous nature of virtual interviews allows candidates to interview at any time, meaning potential candidates with busy schedules that would typically make an interview during the usual 9-5 difficult no longer need to stress about finding the time.
Over the last few years, our work culture shifted to where employers are now expected to create a warm and inviting workplace. In short, candidate expectations have increased. Failing to meet these expectations means you risk missing out on top talent. As such, candidate experience has become a new priority for recruiters across industries. What makes a good candidate experience? Simply put, speed and flexibility. Both of which virtual interviews provide in droves. Virtual interviews put candidates in the driver's seat of their interview, signaling that their potential new employer values their time. It also allows you to respond to candidates faster, almost instantly after they apply. This speed is critical when you consider that CareerPlug has found that 84% of job seekers reported that employer responsiveness directly influenced their decision to accept an offer.
High-volume hiring is no easy task. It takes a well-thought-out recruitment strategy and the right tools to succeed. Unlike the average hiring process that receives maybe 50 applicants, high-volume hiring entails recruiting large numbers of candidates in a relatively short period of time. That takes attracting that quantity of candidates in the first place, but more importantly, your team has to be able to handle the volume.
Virtual phone interviews allow recruiters to interview 24/7, no matter how many candidates apply, and the recorded format allows recruiters to screen them quickly. With the right on-demand platform, like Qualifi, you can even sort those candidates so you reach the best candidates first.