The benefits of video technology for recruitment (and how to make the most of them)
Danielle Meakin - 6 Comments - 29 Sep 2019

The advance of technology has created major changes for the world of recruitment, making it easier than ever for employers to search for and connect with potential candidates and prospects around the world.

The growing use of video technology has been one of the biggest developments, giving companies a fresh new channel to communicate their brand values and conduct interviews with talent more conveniently than ever before, regardless of geography.

 

 

At a time when the world is facing major disruptions to travel and business norms, innovations like this are proving indispensable to organisations looking for the best ways to carry on regardless.

However, the benefits of video technology shouldn’t be taken for granted; as with any new technique, businesses will need to learn and get used to the specific quirks and requirements of using video for recruitment in order to get the most out of it.

Some companies have been using video interviewing methods and recruitment techniques for years, and they have proven its worth many times over, both in periods of disruption and in our day-to-day activities.

Here, we will share some of what we have learned about getting the best out of video technology in order to help you unlock all of the benefits available.

 

What are the advantages of video technology for recruitment?

 

As online video content has become increasingly common, the advantages it provides have become very clear. Video offers a flexible, immediate and highly accessible medium for corporate communication, providing much greater scope for engagement and intimacy than emails or static written content.

Recruiters are currently finding all sorts of uses for video, including:

  • First-stage interviews
  • Video job advertisements
  • Preparation and training videos
  • Candidate success stories and video case studies
  • Candidate promotional videos

Of these, the ability to carry out interviews remotely has arguably had the greatest impact, providing hiring managers with a way of meeting and getting to know applicants that’s more versatile and convenient than ever before. Instead of needing to block out time to organise a face-to-face meeting, all of the parties involved can simply dial into a video conference call as soon as it’s convenient, and get straight into the process of getting to know each other.

A well-organised video interview can deliver the following benefits:

  • Businesses can organise interviews with candidates working on busy schedules, including those who have existing professional commitments. This is particularly beneficial for companies looking to access top-level talent who already have jobs within their chosen market
  • Recruiters and candidates can avoid the need to travel and book time away from other projects to attend the interview, creating productivity and cost saving benefits
  • Employers can meet a higher number of candidates in a shorter amount of time, helping to accelerate the overall recruitment process
  • Having a formalised video interview process creates a more consistent interviewing experience for candidates, putting applicants on a level playing field and helping the recruiter make decisions in close calls
  • When compared to a phone interview, video-based options are a much better option, as they enable you to see a candidate’s body language, facial expressions and overall appearance. This helps you piece together a picture of how they would fit into your business

In our experience, most candidates go straight into a final interview after a successful initial video interview, highlighting the effectiveness and proven benefits of this process in the world of corporate recruitment.

 

What are the potential pitfalls of video interviewing?

 

As with any kind of technology, video interviewing comes with its own potential issues, and getting video interviewing right requires companies to be aware of these. Of course, technical hiccups can’t always be avoided, but there are certainly steps that can be taken to avoid the most common pitfalls.

For the employer or recruiter, poor planning can lead to a video interview feeling disorganised or chaotic. This may be because efforts weren’t made to create a presentable professional space to host the interview, or because your network connection cannot cope with the demands of the live video stream, resulting in a glitchy or laggy conversation. This can be disastrous for the interview, resulting in both parties being unable to hear each other, so it is vital to make sure the connection has been properly stress-tested in advance.

Meanwhile, candidates also need to be properly prepared for the specific conditions created by the video interview. Some will naturally feel nervous about looking into a camera or seeing themselves on screen, meaning they do not perform at their best, while others will find their home internet connection is not up to the task. As such, ensuring that applicants are mentally ready for the video chat – and have the equipment they need to make it happen – should be a top priority for recruiters.

 

How should participants prepare for a video interview?

 

Getting the most out of a video interview means that applicants and employers alike need to take the right steps to get ready, bearing the unique requirements of the video technology in mind.

This means:

  • Making sure both parties have a strong internet connection, which may require relocation to an area with the best possible signal. This should include encouraging other people on the same network to avoid taking up too much bandwidth with other streaming programs and services during the call
  • Both the candidate and the interviewers should set up an appropriate space for the meeting, with a plain, clear background, good lighting conditions, a lack of glare and shadows, and low background noise
  • Any devices used during the video interview should be properly charged, or plugged in where possible, to avoid a low battery interrupting the conversation
  • Participants should come up with a backup plan for any problems that arise. This may mean having a secondary device or software program on hand, just in case

In most other ways, preparing for a video interview should be basically the same as getting ready for any kind of interview, as the conversation itself won’t be too different from an in-person meeting. After all, the goal of the process – to find out about the skills, values and personality of the candidate – remains the same, so the topics of their questioning are unlikely to change.

Similarly, most of the tips offered to applicants ahead of a face-to-face interview will apply equally to a video call. No matter whether the interviewer is there in person or appearing on a screen from another country, it remains just as important for candidates to maintain eye contact, plan out structured answers, ask the right questions and provide a good sense of their natural abilities.

Essentially, video technology ultimately doesn’t change what’s most important about the interview process: namely, its value as a tool for employers and talented professionals to get to know each other. However, by properly harnessing the advantages that streaming technology can provide, you can ensure your recruitment processes are as flexible and convenient as they need to be to handle all the challenges 21st century life throws at you.

Written by Carlo Miller, Recruitment Partner at The People Pod, for Smart Recruit Online.

 

Smart Recruit Online offers an award-winning talent attraction software that can streamline and revolutionise your recruitment. To find out what we can to for your recruitment strategy, book a demo by clicking here.

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Carlo.Miller@smartrecrooot.com'
Carlo Miller


Carlo Miller is a Recruitment Partner at The People Pod.


How To Prepare Your Business To Recruit Service Leavers
Danielle Meakin - 6 Comments - 29 Sep 2019

Between 12,000 and 20,000 veterans leave the armed services each year and venture into the civilian workforce. Yet a large percentage of them are struggling to find their perfect job role. Thanks to 31% of recruiters being reluctant to hire ex-military personnel, according to reports by SSAFA. The number one reason? Many of them worry about being adequately prepared to provide the right support for veterans. However, employing ex-military personnel can benefit your organisation in so many ways, like adding all-important diversity to your workplace, a great work ethic and providing your business with highly skilled employees.

 

Educate Your Recruitment Team To See Past The Differences On A Veteran CV

One of the barriers stopping the recruitment of ex-armed forces employees is the recruitment process. They don’t always take into account the unique skill set that ex-military candidates may possess. Many of them do apply for jobs and end up never getting past the first stage of selection. Simply because their CV does not look like that of a standard traditionally trained professional. Yet, the skills they can bring to the job can be easily transferable and extremely useful. To combat this, focus on training your recruitment team to identify and understand the transferable skills that an armed forces CV can offer.

Research by SAAS showed that some of the positive skills possessed by service leavers include being a strong team player, resilience and being good problem solvers. However, there remains a gap between recognising these qualities and employment practices, according to Jessica Rose at Business in the Community. You can also run regular workshops in your business covering topics such as CV preparation and assessment of employability skills.

 

Build A Support Package Specifically With Ex-Military Employees In Mind

Offering personalised benefits can attract the right talent, including military personnel. To do this, you must first understand the needs of your workforce. If you are going to be adding ex-military personnel to your workforce, it may be a good idea to do research on the key benefits that matter to them. For example, recent research has shown that levels of PTSD are on the increase for veterans. This indicates the need to prioritise mental health benefits, including psychotherapy, hypnotherapy and family therapy.

In addition to prioritising mental health benefits, you will want to focus on other benefits, such as disability and health insurance. A large percentage of the military population retire or leave the armed forces with an injury or disability that may affect their job performance. Securing cover means they feel better having a safety net, and your business is also covered for the possibility.

Most online compensation calculators offer disability and veteran considerations to help you accurately estimate veteran impairment ratings and compensation categories. Another suggestion is to offer direct links to organisations focused on supporting veterans with PTSD and their families. The more uniques support you can provide, the better you will look in their eyes.

 

mental health

 

 

Publicise Your Dedication To Supporting Veterans

The United Kingdom is littered with employers all doing their best to support ex-armed forces. They do this by either offering veteran recruitment programs, retraining or other recruitment initiatives. The one thing they all seem to have in common? They publicise their efforts and willingness to employ military personnel.

Whether it is creating a dedicated careers section for military applicants, offering a veterans employment program, or announcing your vacancies on the social networks of military support organisations, this can ensure your business is noticed by the right people – the veterans.

As a business and employer, this is a responsibility to secure the best talent you can for your organisation. This usually means striking the right mix and balance of differently skilled employees and should include service leavers.

However, you must be prepared to adequately support ex-military personnel, just as you would for any other class of employees. Whether you are just launching your veteran recruitment program or are already an employer of service leavers, it is certainly worthwhile taking the time to design your HR function with them in mind.

 

Smart Recruit Online offers an award-winning talent attraction software that will streamline and revolutionise your recruitment strategy.

We offer a customisable software platform integrated with multiple selection and screening tools, enabling you to make well-informed recruitment decisions. 

To find out what we can to for your recruitment strategy, book a demo by clicking here.

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Lucy Wyndham


Lucy Wyndham is a freelance writer and editor.


How To Build A Culture Of Access At Work & Harness The Power Of Disabled Staff 
Danielle Meakin - 6 Comments - 29 Sep 2019

According to the Office of National Statistics, almost half of all disabled people in the UK are unemployed (46 per cent). Considering that there is thought to be nearly 8 million people in the country with some type of disability, that is a massive number of undervalued and underutilised people.

It, therefore, seems logical to ask ‘Why are so many disabled people unemployed?’ The answer is, unfortunately, because there is still a certain amount of stigma around disabled people. Many businesses and hiring managers are likely to think of a disabled employee as an inconvenience at best, and an unnecessary expense at worst.

But thankfully, such stigmas and mentalities are starting to fade away. Especially because of the — as studies have shown — tangible economic benefits that are enjoyed by companies that have already invested in disabled talent.

 

workplace wellbeing

 

A success story

While there is some truth that a disabled candidate may need some adjustments to help them in a typical workplace, most of these adjustments are inexpensive and very minor. And this could make all the difference between hiring a disabled person with the relevant skills and the right attitude, or just another able-bodied candidate.

In the engineering sector, the company Morgan Sindall Construction & Infrastructure came to that realisation back in 2016. So they reformed their hiring policies in the hopes of building what we would now commonly call a “culture of access”. According to Dawn Moore, the company’s HR director, the reforms have benefited progress immensely. Wins include an increase in recommendations from 50 – 95 per cent; greater feelings of respect and inclusivity from line managers, and a near total agreement amongst employees that the company has their wellbeing as number one priority.

The company is now seeking ‘Leader’ status. That is, an official recognition by the UK government that a company is committing itself to building a culture of access within its walls.

 

workplace culture

 

‘Disability Confident’ and the campaign for greater inclusivity

The ‘Leader’ status is part of a hierarchy of status-levels recognised by the UK government’s Disability Confident scheme. When it was first implemented, Disability Confident openly sought to encourage employers to recruit workers with disabilities.

Initially, a lot of questions were asked about how the scheme could ever hope to be reasonably successful. After all, many businesses feared major adjustments would be necessary to their workplaces. There were also misgivings about the different approaches that would need to be adopted more generally to promote inclusivity.

These are legitimate obstacles for businesses that won’t go away overnight, but that hasn’t deterred the more-than 16,000 British companies that have already signed up to the ‘Committed’ level. At this level, companies have declared a promise that they will take active measures to recruit and hold on to disabled workers.

Committed is the lowest form of recognition by Disability Confident. After that is ‘Employer’ status followed by Leader status — the final level. In order to become a Leader, a business must prove that it has demonstrated a positive influence on having recruited disabled people into its workforce.

 

The benefits of the ‘culture of access’ at work

The benefits of a culture of access don’t stop with helping disabled people into the world of work. They reach every employee in the business. Once the mentality of inclusivity is introduced into a workplace, people tend to become more aware of the needs of others, full stop. It encourages greater levels of support for all employees and a greater sensitivity to others who may be undergoing changing family or health situations.

Lastly, as more people are waking up to the fact that disabled people, much like the general population, come with incredible individual talents and strengths of their own, the untapped disabled workforce may be a lifeline to many key industries at home.

The British engineering sector, for example, has been in a free-fall recruitment crisis since before 2016. With the curtain suddenly lifted on a standing army of nearly 4 million people, it becomes obvious that such skills shortages and recruitment problems only have to be an issue if we, as a society, let them be.

At the moment none of the Leader-status businesses under Disability Confident are in the construction and industry sector — in fact, very few of them have anything to do with technology. This attitude will have to change soon for these businesses to avoid a deep crisis. But the key to success remains remarkably simple: it is all about creating a workspace where everyone — including disabled people — can work, thrive, and most importantly stay, with a business.

 

This article was written by Neil Wright of Webster Wheelchairs, one of the NHS’s leading suppliers of wheelchairs, rollators, and other elderly and disability-friendly equipment. 

 

Smart Recruit Online offers an award-winning talent attraction software that will streamline and revolutionise your recruitment strategy.

To find out what we can to for your recruitment strategy, book a demo by clicking here.

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Neil.Wright@smartrecrooot.com'
Neil Wright


This article was written by Neil Wright of Webster Wheelchairs, one of the NHS’s leading suppliers of wheelchairs, rollators, and other elderly and disability-friendly eq


How Payroll Cards Are Changing The Company Culture
Danielle Meakin - 6 Comments - 29 Sep 2019

Hiring experts constantly look for ways to build and preserve company culture and ensure that each and every employee feels cherished and respected in their work environment. Sometimes, the potential to enhance employee retention comes from your company benefits and team-building efforts. The perks you offer to each employee, and access to vacation days will contribute to making them feel more valued. At other times, however, that same potential hides in the least likely of places. This includes your payroll department and procedures – which includes so much more than simply their salary or their bonuses.

It encompasses everything from the way in which you handle taxes, ensure timely payments, utilise compensation for incentivising better performance and rewarding successful employees, all the way to how transparent you are with your payroll in general. Here are a few ways in which you can expect payroll to grow and empower company culture when used properly.

workplace culture

Inspiring confidence and trust

Nobody likes to wait. You don’t want your employees to feel the disquiet of anticipating their salary and then receive it a week later. If anything, you should aim to exceed your employees’ expectations. This is another segment of your business where you can show them how reputable and trustworthy your company is. 

Your employees’ salary is one of the main symbols of success, but also of financial security, and if your business fails to live up to those security standards, chances are you’ll drive your employees away, into the arms of an employer who pays them in time, and in full – every time, no excuses. 

Preserving your company’s reputation

A vital segment of building your company culture includes how your business is perceived based on your financial track record. Are you famous for always working with reputable vendors? Paying your taxes in full? Even using some of your profits to contribute to certain causes?

Managing your finances like a business is a multifaceted process. It allows your employees, but also the public, get a sense of what your brand stands for – and it should stand for integrity above all else. When you protect your reputation in such a way, you’re bound to inspire your employees to be your brand ambassadors. They are much more likely to stay loyal and recommend your business when you stick to your promises.

Ensuring simplicity and convenience

Your employees already experience plenty of stress in their daily lives, and you don’t want to add to it. If anything, you want to make sure that their compensation is a source of joy in every possible sense. This includes the way in which they are able to collect, use, and rely on their salary. In recent years, more companies are transitioning to modernised payroll systems that utilise automation as well as personalization.

For example, one of the benefits of the payroll card is that your employees can now avoid long waiting times and additional fees when they need access to their salary. It is a simple, yet effective way to make this process all the more convenient. This single decision shows that your business puts your employee first when choosing the most efficient, cost-effective solutions for their payroll processes. Taking out all the hassle from this process allows your employees to build stronger bonds with your brand.

Making employees feel appreciated

If working for your brand means being valued and appreciated, you can rest assured that more employees will be eager to stay with your business for longer, and oftentimes recommend your brand as an employer to people they know and trust. Your payroll is the key ingredient in providing this sense of value and appreciation to your employees. When they always receive their salaries on time, and they always get the bonuses they worked so hard for, they will indeed know that their work is noticed and rewarded.

Ensuring optimal, if not competitive compensation, delivering it efficiently, and respecting your employees’ needs in the process all contribute to your team’s desire to stay true to your business. Keep in mind that such high levels of fairness enable companies to build a culture where people thrive and gladly put their best foot forward for each task. 

Payroll may seem like yet another monotonous process that boils down to numbers and stamps. However, when found in the hands of the right HR expert, payroll becomes another empowering tool for your entire company structure, a way to build your reputation, and a key to employee satisfaction. Use it to help your company culture evolve and let it mimic all the values that your business stands for – it will inspire people to stay true to your business and bring other valuable assets to your doorstep. 

Written by Lauren N. Wiseman.

 

Smart Recruit Online offers a low cost multi-award winning online recruitment service with a 98% independent customer satisfaction rating and the highest direct-hire fill rate in the UK.

To book a demo with us and learn more about how our technology can transform your recruiting process, click here.

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Lauren N Wiseman


Lauren is a regular SRO Blog and Bizzmark Blog author that has many articles published with the main focus on clients who want their brands to grow in the fast-changing and demanding market. Her personal favorites are successes of small businesses, startups, and entrepreneurs. She goes through life with one strong moto - Kindness, always.


4 strategies to get the best talent for your small business
Danielle Meakin - 6 Comments - 29 Sep 2019

Did you know that unemployment rates in the UK are now at their lowest since the 1970s? This is obviously great news for the economy but presents a big challenge when it comes to hiring the best talent for your company. With the job market now being candidate-driven, finding the right people for your organisation can be harder than ever before.

We all know how important it is to have the best people working for you. With a talented and motivated team on board, your business stands the best chance of being successful. In that sense, employees are your most valuable asset, and care must be taken to recruit and retain them just as much as generating sales or managing finances.

So, are you doing all of the following?

 

Review your HR approach

A new recruitment drive is all very well but before you start thinking about hiring new employees, are you sure you’re doing everything you can for your internal staff retention and development? There’s little point hiring new people if they won’t stay with the business long enough for you to reap the benefits.

Business Coach and Online Educator Rob da Costa suggests the following talent retention incentives in one of his recent blog posts:

  • A focus on education
  • Salary increases based on merit
  • Flexible working conditions
  • Attractive benefits package
  • Pointing out future possibilities
  • Promoting from within
  • Investing in quality managers

Take a look at your team and ask yourself how happy and engaged your workforce is. Are you training them, promoting them, rewarding them appropriately? Do you have a positive company culture? In a job seekers’ market, it’s not just job seekers who are being harder to please. Your existing staff may consider changing jobs if they feel more valued elsewhere.

 

Invest in your company culture

Company culture is a big and growing topic that you cannot afford to neglect. It’s a magic formula that goes like this: Get your business model and your internal culture right and you’ll be surprised just how quickly word gets around that your company is the place to be.

When your candidates, employees, customers and the public interact with your business, what’s their experience? The way your company is perceived hinges on its internal culture and how this is managed. Everything follows from here – from team engagement and productivity to employee happiness, staff retention, and business success.

Identifying and developing your company’s brand doesn’t have to be expensive, but it does have to be done. Here are four things you should be doing:

  • Build authentic and meaningful recognition and reward into your company culture to meet your employees’ needs to be recognised for their efforts and achievements, and drive performance, staff retention and employee engagement.
  • Build strong teams that collaborate eagerly, communicate openly, trust each other’s views and are motivated to engage in best performance. Team building shouldn’t be a one-off activity, day-to-day reinforcement may be needed to create a collaborative work culture.
  • Build a flexible work environment, allowing and trusting your staff to choose when, where and how they work. This freedom coupled with personal accountability strengthens your work culture by encouraging happier, higher-performing teams.
  • Create a caring culture that genuinely looks after its employees and goes beyond the norm. X, Y, Z generations want to know that you will look after their best interests and care for them, especially in their hour of need. Employees now prefer healthy food and access to help and advice over a beer fridge or pool table.

 

Company culture

 

Recruit with precision and focus

If there are no internal candidates you can promote to the vacancy, outside recruitment is going to be your next step. Start with a clear job description and be focused on what exactly you are looking for in the right candidate, and what you are going to offer.

The customary ‘spray and pray’ efforts of yesteryear will no longer cut it in a job market where candidates can afford to be choosy. With so many other companies competing for the highest calibre candidates, your job advert needs to stand out for all the right reasons.

In order to reach the right people, you need to know where to find them. Social media platforms, such as LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook, are an excellent place to start engaging with potential candidates. There are plenty of specialist organisations and software tools to help you with this. You could also partner with a recruitment consultant who will have the time and resources to dig deep into the job market on your behalf.

 

Ensure a positive candidate experience

Once you have shortlisted your best candidates for an interview, follow through with a carefully prepared and organised meeting. It’s amazing how many companies invest time and effort into recruiting candidates, yet blow their chances on the day. A good candidate will know if they’re being fobbed off with an ad hoc interview.

A negative candidate experience is unlikely to lead to the result you are seeking. Worse still, a disappointed candidate may share his experience on online platforms. Poor feedback may discourage others from joining your company and negatively impact on your brand.

According to recent figures, a positive experience will make the job candidate about 1/3 more likely to accept your job offer. You are selling your company, so you should put your best people in front of the candidates that you want to impress. Confident, ambitious job seekers will have plenty of other opportunities on the table, so do your best to woo them.

 

Written By Annie Button

 

Smart Recruit Online offers an award-winning talent attraction software that can streamline and revolutionise your recruitment. To find out what we can to for your recruitment strategy, book a demo by clicking here.

 

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Annie Button


Annie Button is a Portsmouth based writer and recent graduate. Annie has written for various online and print publications, she specialises in business, recruitment and career development.


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