Human Resources Blog - Spark Hire

Happy Halloween: The Scariest Video Interviewing Mistakes

What’s scarier than ghosts, ghouls, zombies, and vampires? Losing out on a great candidate because you’ve made a simple mistake! It’s Halloween season, which means everything seems a little bit spookier than it does any other month of the year. Simple interviewing mistakes, however, aren’t just scary on Halloween.

Your company needs top talent to survive and thrive in the current economy. The job market is tough and for every open position your company is likely to have a veritable horde of applicants. Unlike zombie hordes, some of these people will have the skills and qualifications your company needs in the office. Others, however, will be a downright scary match for your organization.

Video interviewing is a great way to save time and money while still connecting with the top candidates your company needs. Just like an in-person meeting, it’s easy to make simple mistakes while video interviewing your top talent. You don’t want a competitor draining off your best candidates like a vampire after blood.

Here are some of the scariest video interviewing mistakes HR managers and recruiters are making this Halloween, and the simple solutions on how to save your company from these terrifying errors:

Is Your Candidate a Ghost?
What’s spookier around Halloween than the concept of ghosts? Those spirits you can feel but can’t see can be downright haunting. If your candidate is a ghost, this means you’ve fired up your webcam and waited in your live video interview only to see nothing on the other side. Either your candidate is Casper and you’re looking right through them, or they didn’t show up.

Before writing off this talent as inconsiderate, make sure the problem isn’t on your end. For instance, many people forget to adequately account for time zones. If you’re used to interviewing local talent but your new candidate is from a far-flung locale, you might be at the right place at the wrong time. Make sure you account for time zone differences when video interviewing top talent so you don’t end up speaking with a ghost.

Shadow People
In horror movies, sometimes shadow people from another dimension will leak into our world and cause trouble. Not many candidates will want to interview with a shadow person- no matter how impressive your company is. If you ignore proper lighting in your video interview however, this might be exactly what you look like to the top talent you’re speaking with.

Nothing seems more unprofessional than being completely unable to see the person on the other side of the webcam. Make sure you set up a lighting system to ensure the candidate on the other side of the webcam can see your lovely smiling face, instead of being interviewed by a shadowy figure.

Do You Hear What I Hear?
In scary movies, sometimes the protagonist knows the house is haunted because they hear strange sounds or whispers. In your video interview, you want your voice and picture to be more than a ghostly visage. This is why it’s essential you check your equipment before quizzing a top candidate.

Make sure your webcam and mic are working properly. It’s hard to conduct a good video interview if the candidate on the other side of the screen can neither see nor hear you. You’re not a malevolent spirit, so make sure your candidate can see you clearly. Utilizing video interviews in your hiring process can really save your company time and money. If you pay attention to these spooky but easily avoidable errors, you can snag the talent your organization needs!

How do you avoid scary mistakes in the hiring process? Share below in the comments!

The 5-Day Crash Course to Video Interviewing

Heather Huhman

Heather R. Huhman is the Career & Recruiting Advisor for Spark Hire. She writes career and recruiting advice for numerous outlets, and is the author of Lies, Damned Lies & Internships: The Truth About Getting from Classroom to Cubicle (2011), and #ENTRYLEVELtweet: Taking Your Career from Classroom to Cubicle (2010).