Human Resources Blog - Spark Hire

Video Interviewing: Keeping it Legal

Video Interviewing: Keeping it LegalWith more and more businesses utilizing video interviews, you may be considering implementing this technology into your startup’s existing interview process.  One of the questions that many small business owners have about video interviews deals with how to stay within HR guidelines and keep things legal.

While video interviewing can seem like a huge difference from the standard resume screening, phone screening, and in-person interviewing, there is no difference when it comes to HR requirements.  The main difference in the two methods is that video interviewing allows you to actually see the candidate earlier on in the process, or see a remote candidate in their home setting.

In any instance, it is important that you remember what to do in order to ensure your interview goes smoothly and stays within legal guidelines.

Ask the right questions

Conducting a video interview, whether it is a one-way or live interview, should be very similar to a phone interview or an in-person interview.  Yes, you will be able to visibly see the candidate sometimes earlier than normal and sometimes in their home setting, but you must still approach the interview in the same mindset as if you were on the phone with the candidate or interviewing the candidate in your office.  You still need to stick to questions that deal with the candidate’s ability to do the job and stay away from questions regarding their personal beliefs or life.

Treat each candidate equally

Above all, the most important thing to remember when implementing video interviews into your consideration process is that you must treat each candidate equally.

This is no different than in any other situation when you are interviewing someone for a position.  You must concentrate on the candidate’s skill, experience, and ability to do the job required.  Age, race, or any other differentiating feature should not be a limiting factor in your interview process.

Keep this in mind, especially when interviewing candidates through live videos.  For example, if you notice through the video that the candidate has a family photo in the background, it is not okay for you to ask questions about their family.  Questions about children, marriage partner, or marriage in general should be avoided.

In addition, if you notice that the candidate seems to have a little gray in their hair, it is not appropriate to ask questions regarding age.  In fact, just as with any interviewing situation, it is not appropriate to disqualify a candidate due to age.

Implementing video interviews into your interviewing process can be a bit scary at first, but as long as you remember all of the basic rules of interviewing, you will find that video interviews are a huge timesaver to your interview process.

Have you considered implementing video interviews into your current interviewing process?  If so, what have been your concerns?  We would love to hear from you – please leave your comments below.

Image: Wavebreak Media Ltd/

Julia Weeks

Julia is a skilled Recruiter with over 8 years of experience in sourcing, interviewing, and hiring within many industries globally. She works closely with hiring managers and job seekers to understand needs and desires, while offering guidance and ensuring the right fit. When not recruiting or writing, Julia enjoys spending time outside cycling, taking her dog for walks, or honing her sailing skills.