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Video Interviewing; A Rare Look Behind the Scenes

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Rachel Jones interviews Daniel Richard UK Managing Director of Sonru.

At Recruitment Buzz, it has always been our aim to keep our readers ahead of the latest trends in this ever changing and evolving industry. Over the past few months, you may have noticed the gathering momentum of one technological trend – video interviewing. Recruitment stalwarts will have differing attitudes about them – many won’t be complimentary as at their inception, they were widely regarded as being far more time consuming and complicated than arranging a traditional face-to-face interview. However, times have changed and with advances in technology, companies have been able to improve the process no end. At the forefront of these improvements is multi-award winning Sonru.

A global leader in the field of video interviews and video screening, they are recognised leaders in their field, having established the effectiveness and validity of using video in the recruitment process. Companies like Volvo, Arvato Bertelsmann, Apple, CERN, Johnson & Johnson, Bioware, Magnox, Kuehne & Nagel, Allianz, Schroders and Taleo have innovated in their talent acquisition processes by using Sonru’s video interview solution and at Recruitment Buzz, we believe many more big names will follow in their footsteps. That’s why we decided to ask Daniel Richard, UK Managing Director of Sonru to tell us a little more about his business and also his opinions on video interviewing and how it can improve the recruitment process…

Q1: Where did the inspiration for SONRU come from?
In the words of Edward Hendrick, Founder & CEO, “At the time, lots of my friends were looking for jobs and were travelling all around the country, sometimes for very short interviews. I thought there has to be a better way. It was 2006 and online video tools like YouTube and Skype were changing the way the world communicated. I saw an opportunity to develop a recruitment specific video tool so in 2007 I left my job to pursue the idea and the rest, they say, is history”.

Q2: When you launched what were the “typical” objections to online video interviewing?
We always said our biggest challenge was inertia because our “disruptive” technology was fundamentally changing a fairly standardised recruitment process. Also, recruiters were very concerned about the candidates’ perception of being invited to an asynchronous or automated video interview because it was such new concept. We spent countless hours designing the best candidate experience possible and it paid off because feedback regarding candidates’ perception of our process is very positive, they’re thinking a company that uses this technology is modern and agile and a company they want to join; see whitepaper here – sonru.com.

Q3: Have you seen a change in perceptions over the last 2 years?
Yes, there has been a major change in the perception. Companies are more receptive to the concept and see Sonru as something suitable for them. Our dedicated Knowledge Hub publishes an ever growing body of knowledge and evidence from case studies, white papers and research with our users that clearly outlines the usage and associated benefits. Video in recruitment has definitely come into the mainstream now as the benefits are proven, so companies know this is something they should investigate.

Q4: What remain the key objections today?
A lot of people think asynchronous video interviewing can only be used with graduates or volume/retail roles… which is definitely not the case. Sonru clients have used our solution with all types of roles: Senior Managers, Accountants, Sales/Marketing, Engineers, Cabin crew roles, etc. Any role can be screened via Sonru if it is effectively communicated to the candidates. We recommend a best practice strategy for our clients to communicate to candidates to ensure high levels of participation. Adding a video introduction also enhances the experience for the candidates tremendously.

Q5: The conception of video interviewing seems to have grabbed the interest of the investment community both here and in the US, why do you think this is?
Investors like results and any product that can help companies save money and time is a serious result and a major incentive. It’s very positive, since it takes quite a lot of upfront capital to build a technology company and sell your product to large MNCs. If you want to sell your technology at this enterprise level, you have to solve real problems for the enterprise, and Sonru does exactly that.

Q6: You do a lot of candidate research what’s your take on the feedback you get?
‘Feedback is gold’ is a typical Sonru mantra and the feedback we gather from the candidates allows us to hone the candidate experience and to suggest best practices to our clients. In fact, the insight from all the thousands of candidates that have participated in our research has been noted and is used in the development of the Sonru roadmap.

Q7: The ATS seems to be a good partner, what is your experience of working with ATS vendors?
We partner with many ATS vendors since we provide a solution which fits within the recruitment workflow. ATS vendors like to recommend new solutions that add value and innovation, and some of the ATS vendors gets as enthusiastic about Sonru as our clients. Overall partnerships with ATS have been very successful.

Q8: There seem to be a lot of different charging models in the sector, which one do you think works best?
We provide subscription packages offering limited or unlimited interviews, and a pilot scheme to help clients fall in love with Sonru. Those are the two options that work well for us and our clients. Generally, we find that most clients become truly committed to using video interviewing and want a set yearly cost.

Q9: Would you share 5 tips that any organisation should adopt to deliver a successful video interviewing program?
Communication is key.
1) Internal Communication: Get your team, department and company in general (hiring and line managers) buzzed up about video interviewing. Show them how the system works.
2) Corporate Communications: Brand the Sonru application to your career website.
3) Candidate Communications: Follow the Sonru best practice guidelines in introducing the video interviewing process.
4) Video Communication: Create a nice personal video introduction to greet the candidates when they log in to complete their interview.
5) Allow the Candidates to communicate by being creative with your questions and also by giving the candidate sufficient time to think about their answers.

So what are you waiting for? If you want to stay ahead of the latest recruitment trends, video interviewing should most certainly be at the top of your to-do list.

For information on video interview solutions, please visit sonru.com.

Sonru is a global leader in the field of video interviews and video screening. As recognised leaders in this field we have established the effectiveness and validity of using video in the recruitment process. Companies like Volvo, Arvato Bertelsmann, Apple, CERN, Johnson & Johnson, Bioware, Magnox, Kuehne & Nagel, Allianz, Schroders and Taleo have innovated in their talent acquisition processes by using Sonru’s video interview solution.

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Over the past 3 years, Rachel has been working specifically within the digital marketing space and has worked with some of the country’s top brands. Drawing on her knowledge and experience, Rachel has developed a genuine understanding of how content can engage and compel an audience.

Rachel is responsible for every aspect of web management, marketing and overall production of the Recruitment Buzz brand and is often called upon for her skills and knowledge of WordPress, email marketing software and social media tools.

Rachel works closely with the Recruitment Buzz editorial team and certainly recognises a good story when she sees one!

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