13th of Mai 2020
There are vacancies in the Home Office? New talents are needed, also — or especially — in times of crises. But how do you recruit them when the contact ban is ongoing? Instead of the detailed on-site interviews, digital processing is now required to remove the working conditions. We at SOICON have also faced this challenge and dared to switch to digital recruiting.
We would like to share our impressions, tips and tricks with you and discuss whether this type of contract management is an option for us also in the long term.
Before you start: Preliminary check
First thing to notice — and this is certainly not a surprise — preparation is the be-all and end-all! Anyone who moves the hiring process from a classic personal interview to digital should be aware of the fact that this cannot be implemented one-to-one. Time planning is an important factor in preparing for a digital job interview. In general, more time should be planned for processing any tasks and assessment centers than for the same tasks in an analogue conversation. In addition, these tasks must be precisely defined. The interviewer should ask himself: “What does the specific task look like? What do I expect from the applicant? And what would be the optimal answers to my questions? ”. But it is far from enough to know for yourself how the tasks and questions are meant. It is important how the applicant understands the tasks. In order to clear up misunderstandings and uncertainties, the tasks. Therefore, the instructions should be formulated as precisely as possible. In general, it should be borne in mind that it is often an unusual type of interview, also for the applicant. The clearer the structure of the interview, expectations, tasks, ect. are defined and communicated, the smoother the interview will be, for both parties. General disruptive factors, such as a poor internet connection or communication difficulties, must also be considered beforehand, so that nobody gets into time pressure. It is advisable to carry out a test run before the first interview, for example with one of your own employees. In this way, the applicant perspective can be simulated and better understood. In addition, an applicant must be sufficiently informed in advance of the (technical) requirements for the interview to be carried out. Even in this times it is not a matter of course that everyone has a laptop with a camera and microphone at home. Therefore, this should be discussed before the interview starts. If you are well prepared and all technical measures are fulfilled, then nothing stands in the way of a successful interview.
The conversation: An online etiquette is needed
Now, the online job interview can start and holds some advantages — if a few rules of conduct are followed! Things that are often not even noticeable in a personal job interview can be very annoying online. Sudden loud noises, such as the rustling of paper or putting down the coffee cup right next to the laptop can be very distracting for some people. These unexpected tones are uncomfortable for everyone. That is why the online etiquette applies: The microphone should be muted by anyone who is not speaking. It should also be borne in mind that what is said, sometimes arrives a little later. The other party will be grateful if you wait a few seconds extra for response. So nobody interrupts the other. When sharing the screen, all relevant tabs should already be open. Also, your own video chat should be minimized, otherwise it can happen that the applicant sees himself, which can be quite confusing. It is imperative to note: Close documents that an applicant is not allowed to see. This applies to confidential documents as well as to the beach photos from your last vacation.
The prerequisites for a successful online interview are fulfilled, so let us come to the advantages mentioned above. If you use an interview via webcam instead of a telephone interview for example, you will find that it can be better assessed whether the applicant fits the company or not. A person’s facial expressions provide a lot of information about their personality, and reactions to questions and tasks can be interpreted better than on the phone. The surprise from a first personal meeting is taken away, but instead both parties are well prepared, as they have already been able to get an idea of the other person. This supports an effective pre-selection and thus saves resources in your own company.
The form of digital recruiting offers employees and employers flexibility in terms of time and location. This not only saves the travel costs for the applicant, but also enables the employer to carry out the recruiting process in any situation (such as during a pandemic) and to establish personal contact with potential employees. Another, not negligible advantage is the appearance of the company. A digital — or at least partially digital — application process signals that you are a modern employer. Digitization is making great strides in the economy. Therefore, it might be beneficial to present to the outside that your workplace is adaptable and based on modern concepts. Simple: Who doesn’t want to be modern?
The final question: How do we handle digital recruiting in the end?
Digital recruiting holds opportunities. Finally, the only question that arises is: Should one only rely on this method in the future, or is online recruiting not suitable as a permanent condition? Digital recruiting processes can work as the only form of employee recruitment. The personality of the applicant can be observed and know-how and corporate fit can be checked. However, it can hardly be denied that digital recruiting also has limits. The current consequences of permanent home office employment show that online is not the same as in person. Therefore, the trial period is particularly important when doing digital recruitment. Both, employers and employees, should use this time to get to know each other and to weigh up the future potential for collaboration
We at SOICON ask ourselves every day what opportunities we can exploit in the context of digitization. The current situation also forces us to change our usual processes. We found that this adjustment can be integrated very well into our regulated workflow. That is why digital recruiting is a model that we will maintain in the future.