In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, work interactions are now moving from in person to online. We know that it’s no easy adjustment but we are here to help support you and keep your hiring on track. With Vettery and many of our client companies still hiring, we decided to speak with Vettery’s own senior recruiter Brooke Henn (over video chat!) to get her advice on hiring from home.

Keeping up your hiring momentum because candidates may be more responsive.

Brooke has seen a “drastic positive shift in candidate response” and hasn’t had a single person not pick up her call since the work from home move. From an interviewing perspective, she says it’s great because “candidates are at home and have a lot more time to take a phone interview now that they aren’t moving from meeting to meeting.”

Working from home also gives jobseekers the privacy to take interviews confidentially. They no longer have to worry about coming up with a reason to step out of the office and resurface a couple hours later. This flexibility might make it easier than ever to interview your perfect candidate.

Be wise about who you choose to be in the (video) room.

“For example, when we’re hiring sales candidates, typically there are 2-3 people in a room to evaluate the candidate during an onsite interview. How many and who you decide to be in the room is definitely important to consider especially now that interviews are virtual,” Brooke said.

While having multiple perspectives is important to hiring the best talent, you may have to make the interview team a smaller group to mitigate meeting distractions that could arise over video chat. Brooke suggests “making sure to mute yourself when someone is speaking to prevent unnecessary noise distractions.”

By taking these steps and including only the necessary decision makers, it will help to reduce interruptions and allow the interview team to better evaluate a candidate. If you can’t make the team smaller, assign different roles to your team by identifying before the meeting who will speak and who will notetake or observe.

Make the interviewee feel comfortable by "showing" that you are actively listening.

“Make sure you are looking at the camera to maintain eye contact with your interviewee,” Brooke said. These types of actions are a great way to demonstrate that you are actively listening. Because 93% of all communication is nonverbal, cues like eye contact, nodding or even waiting a few seconds before responding are important for nurturing understanding and familiarity between the interviewee and interviewer.

Another way Brooke mitigates the initial awkwardness of video calls is to “make the candidate feel comfortable from the very beginning. Loosen them up, by first asking them how their day is going.” Starting that dialogue before jumping into the interview is going to make the person feel more comfortable opening up.

Be extra communicative with your recruiting team to set your team up for success.

“My team is doing daily morning standups to make sure we can sync. We go over what is on everyone’s plate for the day.” Brooke’s team uses both Slack and Google Chat to make sure they are communicating throughout the day. “It’s an adjustment but we’re so used to constant communication at our desks that we want to make sure we maintain that as much as possible. We don’t have the ability to tap someone on the shoulder or roll over to their desk to discuss something.”

It’s important to over-communicate with your team so that you can provide not only team accountability but support if the need arises.

Some final words...

While we don’t know how long this pandemic will play out, we do know that adapting to change gives us the opportunity to learn and grow stronger. It’s about how we respond to change that matters. Vettery is always here to support your hiring needs and continue to make your Monday’s (even at home) something to celebrate.