video resumeA few weeks ago a new company, GetHired opened for business. GetHired lets job seekers post video resumes, and gives those hiring the opportunity to review a candidate in a more personal way, certainly a different experience than a paper resume. Here are two articles that discuss the new venture:

GetHired Receives Funding Reinvents the Hiring Process

When I first read about the company I was intrigued. Video resumes are not new to the industry but they are growing in use and this company has an interesting idea. Time will tell if it catches on. At ATR we’re always looking for ways to improve the recruiting and search experience for both our clients and our contractors and we try to wisely embrace new technologies and new ways of exploiting those technologies specifically within the staffing business. I thought about sharing this with the readers of Staffing 360 but something was nagging me about this and I couldn’t quite put my finger on why I was hesitant.

Then I was linked by Staffing Talk to the article 5 Reason You Need to Meet in Person on Inc. Magazine online by René Shimada Siegel and was reminded of the drawbacks of video and online interviews. Though Siegel is focused on her client relationships, what she has to say holds true for the recruiting and interview process as well. She mentions the ability to make an impression in person, the chance for small talk to advance the business relationship, and the chance to read body language among the benefits of in-person meetings. Siegel says

“…to know what isn’t on the resume that makes each person unique. In their eyes and in their body language, we can see confidence, empathy, fear, friendliness or sincerity. That ability to “read” a candidate beyond their keywords is a huge competitive advantage for us.”

I think these in particular have application for the recruiting and interview process. There are benefits in terms of time and cost savings to employing video resumes, video conferencing and other technology to save time and money but only up to a point. I worry that some might allow virtual contact to completely replace in person meetings and that would be a mistake. Video is not the same as in person and some people or more naturally comfortable in that format but that may not reflect their actual suitability for the job at hand. You could overlook a great candidate.

It is a two way street as well. Are you sure that you and your company are presented in the best light and that candidates can really get to know your firm and what it’s like only through virtual experiences? Be careful that you don’t turn off a promising candidate by not making the effort. Another article caught my eye and reinforces the importance of personal contact. Randstad just released their annual Workmonitor survey that covers 30 countries around the world, encompassing Europe, Asia Pacific and the Americas. This year’s report is entitled “Personal contact preferred” and among the highlights is the news that “70% of all employees prefer personal contact over phone or email,” timely confirmation of what I’d been thinking about.

Again, I of all people am not rebuking technology; I am always on the lookout for ways that it can make my life and my business better. I just like to remind myself, and you, to proceed with care and caution and always remember these are tools to help in developing relationships and finding the right people to hire, but no technology should entirely replace good old fashioned face to face contact.

Jerry Brenholz
President and CEO



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