Human Resources Blog - Spark Hire

How Do I Video Interview…Generation X?

Every candidate comes with their own set of unique interviewing challenges. That’s why we’re tackling how to video interview different types of candidates with this how-to series. Today, we’ll be talking about how to use video interviews to connect with candidates from Generation X. How can you determine which candidates are ready to manage your team for years to come and which are too focused on family?

Like every generation, Generation X’ers have a unique set of qualities that need to be considered when interviewing. Job applicants of Generation X, born between 1964 and 1979, are not only more experienced than their Millennial counterparts, they’re also more likely to have a family, be paying off student loans, saving for their children, and be more affected by unemployment.

While some Generation X’ers are a bit tech-savvy, with 27 percent using LinkedIn in their job search and 21 percent using Facebook, they didn’t grow up with new technologies like Millennials.

With all of this information, how do you connect with Generation X’ers in a video interview? Here are some tips to help you find the very best Generation X’ers for your open positions:

Determine if they have managerial, problem solving, and leadership skills.
Unlike the Millennial job seeker, Generation X job candidates are looking for a career, not simply a job. They are in it for the long haul. These job candidates also have more years of experience than Millennials, but are not quite as close to retirement as Baby Boomers.

Therefore, Generation X’ers will be next in line for upper management in the coming years. So choosing a Generation X’er wisely and strategically will benefit your business in the long-run. Look for important long-term skills such as management, problem solving, leadership, and critical thinking when interviewing Generation X job candidates. Take a close look at their past work experience to see if it will benefit your company and make sure they can share examples of this past experience during their video interview.

Stress your company’s growth opportunities and unique benefits
Generation X job candidates are looking for a long-term commitment that will benefit their family too. In fact, when asked what they valued most in an employer, Generation X’ers rated job security (65%), employee benefits like healthcare (62%), and location (55%) as most important.

Emphasizing your company’s job growth opportunities during your video interview, such as the potential for bonuses, raises, or movement to new positions, are likely to attract Generation X job candidates. Be sure to discuss other benefits such as healthcare, dental, retirement plans, or daycare facilities when interviewing Generation X’ers, as these benefits are also very important to them.

Gauge if their management style aligns with your company’s
Generation X’ers are known to be independent, a bit informal, and in need of their space. If your company culture thrives on micromanagement with a lack of creativity, Generation X candidates might not thrive. But no candidate is the same, regardless of their generation, so ask questions that gauge their management needs and style to determine if they’re the right fit for you.

Not every Generation X job candidate is created equal. Some will fit our description while others will vary from the norm. But it is important to recognize that Generation X job candidates have very different needs and levels of experience than other generations.

What are some things you look for in great Generation X candidates? Share in the comments!

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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).