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Master the changing face of job interviewing

The new trend in hiring in 2013? Challenge-based and video interviews. Read how you can master these new challenges.

Just when you got the hang of the in-person or phone interview, things are changing. According to HireArt, a company that helps employers make hires, the new trend in hiring in 2013 is utilizing challenge-based and video interviews.

"Businesses and recruiters are using video interviews and work samples as a way to effectively vet job candidates before bringing them in for an actual interview so employers can "try before they buy" and ensure they're finding the right candidate for the job."

For example, if a business is hiring an engineer, they may present a coding challenge to candidates; if they're hiring a social media manager they may ask candidates to create compelling tweets.

Here are some tips from HireArt to ensure that candidates are prepared for both the challenge-based and video interviews that are becoming more common in today's competitive job market.

1. Act like you want to be there.

Being energetic over a video interview can go a long way in making you stand out against other candidates that seem bored or uncomfortable. Even though it might be more difficult to seem enthusiastic about a job when you are just talking to the camera, you should try to come across as excited and passionate about why you want to be there.

2. Watch your presentation.

You don't look as good on camera as you look in person (it's true!). So, don't let basic components of your interview, such as attire and lighting, negatively affect how you come across. Dress as you would dress were the interview taking place in the office. Record the view in a bright place that allows the interviewer to clearly see you. And make sure the quality of your audio allows the interviewer to really understand what you are saying. Although these things are not related to your skills, they could count against you when other candidates have them and you don't.

3. Don't be sloppy.

Typos and lack of attention to detail in your online applications often immediately disqualify you. Take the time to be careful!

4. Know your own pitch.

Most video interviews require you to record a two minute pitch about yourself. Really think about what you want to get across, what experiences you would like to highlight, what sets you apart from other candidates, and how you want to say this in a succinct way.

5. Make sure you know the company, its competitors and the industry inside and out.

If you are invited to an interview, even if it is an online interview, companies expect you to understand the position and know the company well. Use this information to craft your pitch and at every other chance you get. Articulate specifically why you want to work at the company - what specifically drew you to this position.

About

Toni Bowers is Managing Editor of TechRepublic and is the award-winning blogger of the Career Management blog. She has edited newsletters, books, and web sites pertaining to software, IT career, and IT management issues.

23 comments
writerwin
writerwin

I was interviewing for my current job while living several states away and was fortunate enough to have the option to do it over video conferencing (iMeet specifically), saving travel costs for me and allowing me to secure employment before an already-planned move. In addition to the tips already listed I'd add these three: 1) Demo the Tech Ahead of Time - I can't stress this enough. Sign up for a free trial of whatever video service you're using for the interview or at least get in and fill out your profile information to make sure your browser capability and everything checks out, rather than finding that out when the interview is supposed to be starting. 2) Show Up Early - Similar to the above note, but even when your tech checks out, at least be on time, if not a few minutes early. You wouldn't come running into an in-person five minutes late (hopefully!) 3) Be mindful of your surroundings - Even the sharpest professional apperance loses something if the background is a dirty apartment. Find a clean wall or something to set up in front of - make sure you stay the star of the show.

zca
zca

So not only to you need to be good at the job you're applying for, you have to look good (and be comfortable) on camera. God help me if I have to ever interview for a new job. Just keeping up with the latest "trends" in job interviewing is a career in itself.

Andrea Solinas
Andrea Solinas

I don't like to be on videos at all I never did, and i don't like to listen to my voice recorded, that would make it impossible for me to be natural on a video interview, and yet on face to face interview i' ve always been good... and proven many times that i have good technical skills, I'm sure i will never get a job with a recorded video, good way to miss good candidates just because they might be shy or not photogenic. but i think some company get what they deserve, if they prefers photogenic incompetents than skills let them have it.

Kim SJ
Kim SJ

...if I was being hired as a Social Media manager and asked to "to create compelling tweets", alarm bells would ring... social media is about conversations, not old-fashioned push-led content!

CACASEY
CACASEY

There's a big difference between submitting a video resume and having an interview recorded, ala Skype. If Toni is referring to the latter, the harsh reality is cameras are everywhere. And while I am not a cheerleader for HR, I think there is an advantage to a qualified candidate of having their "performance" recorded, in that you are not relying on someone else to interpret what you said or how you behaved during the interview process. That said, I agree with all the comments that point out the potential abuses. But again, reality suggests that incompetent (or illegal) hiring practices will always be with us. Whether an interview is face-to-face or recorded on video doesn't change the fundamental biases inherent in the hiring process.

techrepublic
techrepublic

It seems that for many companies is more important the image than the content... I agree it is a good way to assess the company values or its HR/Management quality. I can see quite few ignorant but well spoken confident people getting the top jobs in UK. A person with a good look, good memory and some theatre training seems to get away with anything, by the time the company realizes (if they do) the damage, he/she will be already moved to other possition/company and left the worse looking ones to repair the damage. Reflection of our culture... maybe, in the middle time, other countries with awfull looking people will take the lead.

Locrian_Lyric
Locrian_Lyric

One thing to remember is that after all the smoke and mirrors is gone, the employee still needs to be able to do the job. A side effect of these 'newer and better' interview schemes is that the only thing you are guaranteeing is that you ar hiring someone who is savy about interviewing, which means that there will be an entire class on this in the code-mills we know and love so much.

eoschlotz
eoschlotz

Another potential benefit from this trend is free Engineering work. We've got this tough problem we can't solve, lets put it out as a "challenge" problem and let 50 people contribute free work for us. Of course, we don't intend to hire any of them.

kaur
kaur

for script writers, directors, video studios, hair and make-up people, and the whole gamut of film production folk for that 2 minute mini epic. Jeesh...who thinks this stuff up?

kitekrazy
kitekrazy

Is is hypocrisy? Hell if I know? Hopeless? Maybe the reason why things get worse is there is less human intervention. The quality of management in just about everything is in decline. Somewhere there's a piece missing. They way to solve this is supply and demand of employment becomes more balanced. We shouldn't have to live in a time where there is 10,000 applicants to bag groceries.

Paul_Hardin
Paul_Hardin

We're in the process of hiring a technical writer. You'd think they'd want to present themselves beautifully in their letters of application and resumes. Not so! Misspellings, poor formatting, random qualifications (e.g., what does being certified as pilates instructor have to do with technical writing?), and inappropriate tone were rampant. To top it off, every one of them claimed to be "detail oriented." If you claim it, show it.

LGgeek
LGgeek

I can see the lawyers salivating now, not sure who came up with idea but they are a complete idiot. I agree with neilson@ just another way to discriminate.

michael.e.garrity
michael.e.garrity

Having been a former HR compensation analyst, I want to observe that HR selection is all about fashion, style and fads and screening.I wonder if anyone has considered any empirical evidence that these cool new methods are valid or reliable selection devices

2bczar4u
2bczar4u

Really? According to whom is this the trend? Are they running the reality shows on Life and TLC and A&E? Might work if I was going for an acting role..... I'm not a real Project Manager I only play one on TV..... sheesh!

neilson
neilson

The video interview is an excellent way of screening out people with facial deformities, incorrect skin color, or an age over 25 years. Some few people naturally look handsome or even gorgeous on video. The rest of us would be improved by wearing Nixon or Godzilla masks. You want a WHAT interview? Video? Are you kidding? I must have misread the job description, and you're hiring on-screen talent. Sorry to have bothered you. MORE ::: Almost forgot to mention that some of us do not have video equipment, as our interests are elsewhere. That'll sure help them, as they screen out all the non-video people while they try to find someone who can hack regexp. EVEN MORE::: This is someone's silly scheme for improving his own advancement within the HR department.

Blue Rabbit
Blue Rabbit

This will appeal to HR types and managers with an HR background because of the ease with which they can mail the video around and see what the rest of the company thinks. Do I want to work with a client that behaves like that? No. Will the client get the best people for the job? No. The ones that will do well are the BS merchants in the shiniest suits - this is the LAST way I would recruit technical staff.

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

employer is worth bothering with. We would like you to do a video Tony. No, in fact hell no, go away, now.

Suresh Mukhi
Suresh Mukhi

How about a sample video of what works and what doesn't work?

kitekrazy
kitekrazy

You would have to get a copy of the video first. Not easy. Discrimination is actually legal in the private sector. How many effeminate white males do you see working in a store where a majority of it's inventory is FUBU clothing. How many obese sales ladies do you see at a Victoria Secret. How many gay bars hire a straight male bartender. The list goes on.

toni.bowers
toni.bowers

Because I agree--I would have to do some kind of artsy, shadow side-profile for one of these videos. I am just not photogenic.

Locrian_Lyric
Locrian_Lyric

...someone as ugly as me? I'd need to hire a makeup artist.

Suresh Mukhi
Suresh Mukhi

I could use that if I want to meet someone's mother. :)