Human Resources Blog - Spark Hire
3 Experts Share How Virtual Interviews Help Them Find Their Best Candidate

3 Experts Share How Virtual Interviews Help Them Find Their Best Candidate

There’s nothing better than finding a true rockstar candidate. In fact, there’s something invigorating about it. But even the best recruiters have dry spells when you just can’t seem to find the right person for the role.

To get out of these ruts, sometimes it helps to hear how others find recruiting success. You can gain a new perspective on the best way to identify great candidates and refine your own strategies for growing your candidate pool.

For inspiration, we asked expert recruiters how they were able to find their best candidate via virtual interview. Here are their stories — and a few takeaway tips — to help you improve your recruiting game:

1. Understand candidate motivations

Greg Ivory“Canned interview questions get canned interview responses. Because I don’t meet my candidates face-to-face, I take additional steps to verify and give myself confidence in their fit.

In the case of finding my best candidate, I asked, ‘Why are you looking for a change?’, ‘Why is now a good time to make a change?’, and  ‘What are you trying to improve about your current situation that you can’t get at your current employer?’ I wanted to understand his motivation and what he was trying to solve to make sure I could match him up with opportunities that truly could improve his situation.”

Greg Ivory Account Executive, Commercial Construction at Management Recruiters of Cedar Rapids

Key takeaway

Don’t make the mistake of using the same canned interview questions for every open position. The motivations that make an exceptional salesperson are not the same as a software developer.

Find a way to learn each candidate’s needs so you can determine if they align with the organization. When you encourage candidates to talk about something that matters to them, you get a better idea of how happy they’ll be with your company in the long run.

2. Look for the personal details

Matt Dodgson“One thing that stood out about my best candidate was his chosen backdrop for the virtual interview. He recorded the interview in his study at home. The background wasn’t a bland, nondescript environment. It had personality but wasn’t overly busy.

I felt that I got some insight into his personality. The books on his shelf revealed that his interests spanned beyond his marketing profession into interesting hobbies and sports. The pictures revealed a tight bond with his family. I could tell that this candidate was a dynamic individual that could fit in well with my client’s team.”

Matt Dodgson, Director at Market Recruitment

Key takeaway

With virtual interviews, you can review candidates’ responses more than once. After listening to their answers, take another look for details in the shot that give a hint to the candidate’s interests and personality. Since job seekers can record virtual interviews anywhere they like, chances are the location they choose will reveal something about who they are.

3. Be sure to move quickly

Jen Raines-Loring“As any recruiter would know, there is much follow-up between each hiring step, so one additional step in this process can mean hours of additional work per candidate. By using virtual interviews, we are able to combine the phone screen and in-person initial interview into one interaction. We had hundreds of applicants for the VP of Marketing position and, as the main recruiter, I was able to virtually ‘meet’ with over 50 candidates in a reasonably time-effective way.

We believe that time to hire is a critical driver of acceptance when it comes to competitive applicants. Virtual interviews save time in the hiring process, hence directly increase the likelihood that our top choice accepts our offer.

In our recent search for VP of Marketing, we would have lost our top choice candidate had we not followed an efficient virtual interview process and moved quickly to offer. We were able to make an offer within two weeks of receiving her resume. She later reported that she had another competitive offer come in right after she accepted ours and would have accepted the other offer had we not moved quickly.”

Jen Raines-Loring, VP of People and head of recruiting at Springboard Retail

Key takeaway

Remember that the hiring process is a two-way street. Candidates are making a decision about your company as you’re making one about them. Set clear criteria for the position before posting the job so there is no second guessing once video interviews roll in. This will ensure you can keep up with the pace of the virtual interview process and make an offer to your top choice before it’s too late.


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.