Human Resources Blog - Spark Hire

How Do I Video Interview…Tech-Focused Candidates?

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 tech-focused candidates. A video interview can be a great tool for connecting with the tech-savvy job seeker you need for your company.

More companies today are looking for job seekers with specific technical skills to bring to their organization. Whether your company is a fledgling startup or a Fortune 500 organization, it’s important to focus when hiring technical candidates so you end up with the best people. Just like an in-person interview, a video interview is the perfect place to really test out how much your tech-savvy candidate truly knows.

Here are some tips for how to use the video interview to find tech-focused candidates with the technical know-how your company needs to thrive:

Delve into their background
Whether you’re hiring someone to overhaul your website or develop an app, it’s important they have the correct background for the job. Don’t just take their word on what they’ve done in the past- get specific. This is where it’s important to know exactly what tasks and programs your tech-focused candidate will need to know.

In the video interview, encourage your job seeker to get as specific as possible when it comes to listing their skills. Use the video interview as a time when you can ask the candidate for concrete examples of how they’ve used their technical skills in the past. Don’t just accept a vague explanation of their prior experience, really dig deep into their professional past in order to make sure this is the right person for the job.

Ask for help
Depending on your industry or company, as the hiring manager you might be a tech-savvy genius or a tech newbie. Perhaps you don’t know anything about how to develop an app or do back-end web development. You’re still in charge of hiring someone great for this position, even if you’re not filled to the brim with technical know-how.

You might think, just because you don’t understand all the tech-savvy talk, you won’t be able to adequately evaluate great candidates, but this isn’t true. You might just need a little help from your friends- or in this case, coworkers.

Find the team members in your office who will be working with this new tech-focused candidate and pick their brains. Find out exactly what skills and qualifications are most important to performing the position at maximum capacity. If you’re in charge of hiring then you understand the company culture and the kind of personality which will thrive in your organization. However, your tech-savvy coworker will be in a better position to help you understand the technical specifics of the position.

You might even want to get coworkers from these departments involved in the process in a more personal way. For instance, if you utilize one-way virtual interviews, you can make sure department heads are viewing these video answers or helping you develop the right technical questions to ask. When it comes to a live video interview, you can record it so it can be reviewed by multiple team members to ensure the right skills and fit are on display.

Give a skills test
One of the easiest ways to evaluate tech-savvy candidates is to employ a skills test. Isolate the most important skills for the position and task your applicant with a test to make sure they can complete essential tasks. This skills test can be given as part of the application process or as a follow-up to your video interview.

The important thing is to understand how your job seeker works and to see how they deal with real-work tasks. You might even want to put a hard time limit on this skills test to see how your job seeker deals with high stress environments. Whatever you do, make sure to use the test to evaluate whether this candidate has the technical skills necessary for the job.

Hiring a tech wizard for your company isn’t always easy, but if you follow these tips you can use the video interview to find, and hire, the best people for your tech-focused positions.

How do you utilize the video interview to find great, tech-savvy candidates? Share in the comments!

IMAGE: Courtesy of Flickr by D_MacLeod.

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).