Human Resources Blog - Spark Hire

Spark a Conversation: Video Interview Questions to Avoid

Here at Spark Hire, we want to help companies utilize the power of online video to find the best candidates. We get a lot of questions from readers about best practices for using online video in the hiring process. These posts will address those questions about how to find your next superstar employee.

Question: What questions should I absolutely stay away from in the video interview? -Kevin from Chicago

Thanks for the question, Kevin! It’s a question employers should ask themselves, but not just when talking about video interviews. There are certain interview questions employers should never ask in an interview- be it in-person or in a video interview. You want to be sure you, your company and your hiring process are all compliant with Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) regulations. You want to be sure you aren’t asking questions where the answers can be used in a discriminatory manner.

For instance, asking questions about race, religion, sexual orientation or gender should be out of your hiring and interview process completely. For one, asking questions on these topics isn’t just rude, it’s actually illegal. Illegal interview questions such as “how old are you” or “what religion do you associate with” have nothing to do with the position you are hiring for and should never be asked in a job interview. In fact, if these questions are asked a job seeker can take legal action against you. Simply having a video interview with a job seeker is a great way to avoid any kind of discrimination suits job seekers may try to pin on you. Having a recording of your video interview with a job seeker is one way you can prove you never participated in hiring discrimination.

Furthermore, you should be sure you are asking similar questions to each of your job seekers to keep it consistent and avoid any bias. That is another reason why one-way video interviews on Spark Hire are a great tool for hiring managers to use. You can create a series of 10 questions and send those same questions to each of your candidates in the screening process. This way there are no job seekers receiving different (or discriminating) questions and it’s easier for you to compare their answer for competency. The questions you do directly ask job seekers in the video interview should all have to deal with the skills and qualifications necessary to fill the role. You shouldn’t be asking overly personal questions about the candidate or questions that have nothing to do with the position or your company.

Be sure everything you ask and say in your video interview or in-person interview follows EEOC regulations and is not making your job seeker uncomfortable- or question the legality of your question and company.

Do you have a question you need answered? Spark a conversation with the Spark Hire team by submitting your question to blog(at) or in the comments below.

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Josh Tolan

Josh Tolan is the Founder and CEO of Spark Hire, a video interviewing platform used by 6,000+ customers in over 100 countries.