June 1, 2020

Have you Considered the Benefits of Virtual Hiring During the Covid-19 Pandemic?

The Covid-19 pandemic has not only changed how economies are now functioning, it has forced a change in how global teams and industries manage their workforce.

The slew of HR Technology and tools allows teams across industries to collaborate better, communicate instantly and coordinate a multitude of tasks despite geographical difficulties and other challenges arising out of the current global lockdowns.

Read More: How to Establish a Work Culture With a Distributed Workforce

The rise in video conferencing and virtual meetings has led to both small and big players in tech alike (like Google, Zoom, (even apps like WhatsApp)) to enhance their product capabilities to help boost better virtual collaboration and enhance how online meetings are conducted.

Given that the effects of Covid-19 are one part of the story, while learning to live with the presence of the virus is another, are virtual hiring systems the next big thing for HR and HR Technology? It would seem so. The fact that today’s modern day tools and technologies allow global teams to contribute toward business continuity while working from home also means that other functions, like hiring, as a process, may need to move online.

Here are some benefits of establishing a virtual hiring process:

Wider Candidate Reach

Dipping into the available online pool of candidates using sophisticated recruitment platforms allows HR teams to compare a talent base from a wider pool. If there’s one thing Covid-19 has taught us, it is that physically being present is now no more a priority – which means that as HR moves more functions like the hiring process into virtual mode, using recruitment platforms to dip into a candidate base that is spread out globally may be a good idea.

The benefits of increasing reach and dipping into a wider candidate pool also allows companies to hone in on non-local talent without worrying about the federal paperwork (visas and work permits). On the other hand, it also allows companies to build a more diverse culture and team.

Now is as good a time as any to establish a virtual hiring culture while also keeping in mind the advantages dipping into a wider candidate pool offers. If teams can so seamlessly move to a remote work model, hiring candidates across geographies while remote work turns into a norm will be the next step.

Read More: Is Remote Work Here To Stay?

Fewer Interview Rounds that Save Time

Every company has their own hiring policy in place. Depending on the role, especially for SaaS and tech companies in general, filtering candidates on the basis of tests is commonplace. This in itself increases the number of interview rounds potential candidates go through.

When virtual hiring takes over the whole hiring model, there will be fewer interview rounds (there won’t be a need for candidates to physically go to an office, they can do their test in the above scenario and email it over, for instance). While this is just one example of a possible outcome, a virtual hiring process will reduce the number of actual rounds candidates usually go through for most roles because most of the communication and basic details will already have been exchanged over emails or calls.

Reduced Interview Time

There have been several instances of even the most established candidate being forced to wait in line for an interview to take place, when they have visited a potential employer at their office. While on the one hand this is a complete waste of time on the candidate’s part, one cannot forget that business managers also need to take out time from their hectic work schedules to meet these potential candidates.

The great thing about virtual meetings is that you’re expected to book a time slot on the other person’s calendar, when implementing virtual hiring as process, booking a time and duration will be an automatic part of the process, resulting in a lot of better time management for both, the candidate and the hiring manager. Another great benefit of virtual hiring -> using a cloud-based HR tool to record the conversation and screen the interview at a later stage will also be beneficial to teams where more than one person needs to take the hiring decision. A thorough assessment of several candidates at this stage is possible when the conversation/interview round is recorded s part of the virtual hiring process for business managers to revisit later.

Read More: Top HR Tech tools that Help Assess Productivity and Improve Global Workforce Management

No Physical Commute

One of the biggest advantages of the remote work and work from home model is the lack of commute, in fact, recent global news has gone on about how countries across the world are experiencing better climate and environmental changes as a result of the majority of their populations staying home through the Covid-19 pandemic.

A virtual hiring process translates into a candidate’s and hiring manager’s need to just ensure they have blocked the time/date on the calendar to meet virtually and to undergo the usual process that would otherwise have been done face to face. The lack of commute is beneficial for the candidate, especially given that they aren’t sure they will bag the role at hand or not. So why waste that journey? This lack of commute also benefits the hiring manager in more ways than one, namely, when they don’t have to wait because a candidate is stuck in traffic or is delayed due to other exigencies.

The new normal that everyone is setting themselves up for is focused on an increased need to continue with stronger work from home measures. While the global workforce implements this and slowly gets accustomed to the new normal, there is also the need for other functions like human resources to keep up, by establishing strong virtual processes, not just when it comes to virtual hiring but also when it comes to virtual assessments, virtual appraisals, virtual grievance management and a lot more.

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Paroma Sen

Paroma serves as the Director of Content and Media at TecHRseries.com. She was a former Senior Features Writer and Editor at MarTech Advisor and HRTechnologist.

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