The Rise of Video Interviews: Is It Just a Temporary Trend?

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When it comes to selecting potential candidates for a job role, there are many steps to take in order to find the perfect fit! From job applications, perfecting CVs, and completing psychometric tests to the dreaded interview – the processes can be time consuming.

To save time and money some companies choose to interview via video. It’s the same concept as a face-to-face interview, but it cuts out the travel to and costs associated to get into the office. It’s becoming increasingly popular to interview over the video, with easy access to applications such as Skype, Google Hangouts, and FaceTime.

Today, many large companies such as Apple, L’Oréal, and Microsoft use video interview (VI) as a part of their recruitment process – makes sense with the number of applications they receive!

So, what’s driving this new trend, and how does it compare to traditional face-to-face interviews?


So, what exactly is a VI?

When it comes to video recruitment techniques there are two types to do this. One involves the candidate recording themselves answering a set of questions and the other is a two-way live video interview. It allows companies to still see and assess the candidate but without them physically being there.

The employer generally sits in a room within the office and the potential candidate is in a room at home or any quiet spot they can find. All they need is access to a computer or a mobile phone – it’s as straight forward as that!

Occasionally, an interviewee will still go into the office and video call a stakeholder internationally.


Why use VI?

Face-to-face interviews have been the traditional way to interview for decades but with the advances in technology, video has taken over. Here are five main reasons as to why companies and candidates may prefer a VI:

  1. Assess more potential candidates

The rise in video interviewing allows companies to accept more candidates into their interview recruitment process. After sending off job applications and CV’s, many organisations can only pick a select few to then interview, generally due to time constraints. This increase in online video allows them to select more people than usual and more likely to find that ‘perfect fit’. Candidates will have no problem taking 20 minutes out of their day for a video interview if they find it hard to travel to the office. No one wants to lose a great candidate because of this!

  1. Trying to squeeze in back to back interviews?

If you are trying to schedule 20 potential candidates for one-to-one interviews, it can be a challenge. However, with the help of VI, it can be at a time that suits both the employer and candidate.

You can conduct 10 one-way video interviews in the same amount of time it takes to conduct one phone interview – no wonder businesses prefer them! Most of the time employers don’t always need the time that a face-to-face interview takes as It is found that 49% of employers know within the first five minutes of an interview whether a candidate is a good or bad fit!

  1. Prevent unnecessary spending

Having potential candidates from across the country and maybe even globally, can become expensive travel costs can skyrocket. This can result in potential candidates dropping out or employers having to fit the bill. These are costs that can easily be saved by video interviews. Video interviewing results in a 30% reduction in travel costs. Saving time and money – who would choose not to?

  1. Screening remote candidates

If recruiters are open to the idea of hiring a remote worker, then video interviews are the perfect medium for candidates to show off their abilities.

  1. Less pressure on candidates

Many candidates are eliminated early on in the recruitment process despite their skills, simply because they were too nervous during the interview, which unless they are in a front office role, isn’t paramount. VI allows them to be more relaxed, while they are at home, and answer all the questions at their own pace.


And the downsides?

  1. Internet connection issues

One of the major downsides to VI is that they are so dependent on a stable and fast internet connection. If the candidate’s local ISP is not able to provide an adequate quality of service, frequent disconnects and poor video or audio quality may simply cause the recruiter to move on to another candidate.

  1. Diversity

How does VI influence an organisations ability to assess diverse talent?

VI is often used to replace first stage telephone interviews – and allows assessors to physically see candidates earlier on in the recruitment process. Candidates sit ‘one-way interviews’- where they record a response to pre-recorded questions, or ‘live interviews’- where candidates interact with interviewers in real-time.

Exposure to the physical image of candidates can lead interviewees to lean on their own bias, where physical appearance, accents, and social cues are factored in. There is a concern that the immediate world of a tinder type preference, swiping right and left, could be adopted here – we need to ensure that the information received doesn’t encourage selection based on physical appearance. As a validation, it could be useful for some organisations to experiment with exposing some assessors to just the audio of recorded VIs.

Additionally, one-way VI removes the ability of interviewers to probe further into responses, resulting in interviewers falling into an assessment trap – using first impressions to inadvertently validate their bias.


For organisations thinking about adopting VI, a key consideration should be how this is aligned with the diverse aspirations of the business.

While bias-led recruitment decisions are arguably impossible to eliminate completely, companies indicating an assurance to achieving their D&I targets across their whole selection process can certainly take steps to ensure that this technology can work for them and their candidates in a positive way.

So, is this a trend that will last? We think so.



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