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Topic # 240462 9-Sep-2018 12:53
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Weird experience - video interview in USA

I had a weird experience while interviewing for a job in the USA.

It was a large company in the "deep south": As the song "Dixie" says "I wish I was in the land of cotton, old times there are not forgotten."

Anyhow I get an automated email, inviting me to participate in a video interview.

I was thinking this was a standard Skype interview, but instead it was a web address with these instruction:

Make sure you have a video camera and microphone on your PC.

Go to the website.

It asks to have access to your camera and microphone.

In the informal, "try-it-out" part, a video plays with a generic question "How is the weather?" and you get to record and playback your response several times. Your response is not kept.

When you're happy the informal "throw away" part is recording OK, you're allowed to get into the formal part of the interview.

You're shown a question. Technically I guess you could cheat by doing a quick Google search. In my case, I was given 5 technical questions.

You get only one chance to record your response: just a "start record" and "stop and submit" button. You have up to 5 minutes to respond. You can't go back to rerecord, you also can't stop and restart.

And then it's over, and you're allowed to rate the experience.

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SINISTER / PARANOID VIEWPOINT
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As this company is based in the deep south of the USA, I think there may be some ulterior motives.

"Does the candidate look white?"

"Are they from the South (southern accent), or at least is English their first language?"

"What's their approximate age?"

"Do they have an obvious disability."

These are all question that will get you sued in the US.

The video interview reminded me of the "Tinder" dating application, where you could swipe left / right quickly to pick and choose.

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Glurp
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  Reply # 2086428 9-Sep-2018 14:48
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"As this company is based in the deep south of the USA, I think there may be some ulterior motives." There may well be, but the location isn't very relevant. Even in the Trump era, the deep south has changed a lot since Mississippi Burning. There are plenty of racists in the Midwest and elsewhere. The South doesn't have a monopoly on them.

"Does the candidate look white?" Again, lots of black people with mainstream jobs in the South these days. Nothing exceptional about dealing with one. Anyone can be a racist, but it is just as likely to occur in New York or San Francisco.

"Are they from the South (southern accent), or at least is English their first language?" I doubt a Southern accent counts for much anymore. In today's world everyone lives everywhere.

"What's their approximate age?" Maybe.

"Do they have an obvious disability." Maybe.

These are all question that will get you sued in the US.

 

Could well be a sneaky way to get around libelous questions but I don't think you can place too much importance on this alone. More data needed.

 

 





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  Reply # 2086432 9-Sep-2018 15:08
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Or it could just be a easy way to handle the time difference. People record when convient for them, HR view when they can be bothered.

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  Reply # 2086470 9-Sep-2018 15:20
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I've done an "automated" interview of exactly that sort for a large NZ crown entity. I wouldn't read anything too sinister into it. 





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  Reply # 2086486 9-Sep-2018 15:57
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I've done one of those interviews a few years back for an internship at a NZ law firm as well


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  Reply # 2086505 9-Sep-2018 16:32
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All of these questions are also answered via a regular video interview and you could be turned down for the position still. The real question is whether you would want to work for a racist business owner. If you're afraid they are then take a role elsewhere, if not then why worry?


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  Reply # 2091680 16-Sep-2018 20:34
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Heard of two people having done this kind of interview over the last couple of months.

 

Nothing sinister, just another recruiting tool.


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  Reply # 2091685 16-Sep-2018 20:48
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I did this type of interview with my current employer. Nothing sinister at all.




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  Reply # 2091687 16-Sep-2018 20:50
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BTW The platform for mine was ‘HireVue’ which sounds very similar to your experience. Just a tool to cut down the hire workload I guess.




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  Reply # 2091704 16-Sep-2018 22:17
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These seem to be coming more common.

 

 

 

As someone whos not really a fan of being up infront of videos or public speaking, it really does scare me off.





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Any comments made are personal opinion and do not reflect directly on the position my current or past employers may have.


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  Reply # 2091762 17-Sep-2018 09:07
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My real question would be, would you really want to work for an employer who doesn't even give you the time of day to have a real conversation and a face-to-face interview?

 

If asked to take one of these automated interviews, my response would be thanks, but no thanks.

 

I appreciate that it's increasingly more difficult to hire/find good folk - have to be very careful posting anything online else you're immediately swamped by applications from all over the world with various/dubious qualifications/experience.

 

I very much doubt this is a good answer though - it's far too one sided - the applicant goes to all the effort to go through all the questions and record all the answeres, and the poster simply sits at their desk and "swipes left"...

 

Driving to the bottom imo.

 

 


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  Reply # 2091769 17-Sep-2018 09:18
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Pro-tip: these video interview websites often have the questions lined up in Javascript before the video begins – disable Javascript in your browser and view the page source and you should see a list of all the questions before you even begin recording the first one.


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  Reply # 2091770 17-Sep-2018 09:20
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grimwulf:

 

My real question would be, would you really want to work for an employer who doesn't even give you the time of day to have a real conversation and a face-to-face interview?

 

If asked to take one of these automated interviews, my response would be thanks, but no thanks.

 

I appreciate that it's increasingly more difficult to hire/find good folk - have to be very careful posting anything online else you're immediately swamped by applications from all over the world with various/dubious qualifications/experience.

 

I very much doubt this is a good answer though - it's far too one sided - the applicant goes to all the effort to go through all the questions and record all the answeres, and the poster simply sits at their desk and "swipes left"...

 

Driving to the bottom imo.

 

 

I agree 100%. There's also a complete difference (for me at least) between a one-sided video interview where you're speaking to your webcam, and one where you can actually interact with the interviewer. And I don't think the difference is in favour of the interviewee.


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  Reply # 2091774 17-Sep-2018 09:36
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Because my application was for a law internship and it was with one of the smaller top tier firms, I imagine they get a lot of applications but don't quite have the personnel to do as many interviews as other firms, so they use this as an intermediary step to cut down on people they bring in for interviews (as this could be processed by HR)


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  Reply # 2092351 18-Sep-2018 10:01
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I think it's creepy.  Reading about "HireVue" it seems that it's recommended only as a screening tool for low level positions.  Yet a couple of people in this thread have experience with it being used for screening law graduates.  I'm guessing that could be deliberate and could be used to eliminate unconscious bias - in other words for good - you'd be screened out if you didn't match criteria even if your hyphenated last name indicated that your father was a QC or judge, or be selected even if your first name was Kyson or Jewelz and you came from the wrong side of the tracks.  That sounds great - but I bet in practice it's BS.

 

The pages (plural) on privacy also give me the creeps, NZ Privacy Act clearly doesn't apply anyway, there seem to be far too many "outs" - reference to data being held on backup servers, or even if you were in the US, they disclose that data may be held outside the US where the company has no control.

 

Another objection I have to the method also applies to psychometrics and the unrealistic faith people have in the concepts that because test results are repeatable, then the data generated is valid to be used for "something". IOW identify personality characteristics in successful employees, screen for similar characteristics in candidates.  There's a logical fallacy in that method (if good employees have characteristic A, then that does NOT mean that having characteristic B would make for a bad employee). It might be okay to identify a person who'd be happy to be a taxi driver, but counter-productive in large organisations.  You risk ending up with departments full of psychological clones, that stifles innovation, helps create bunkers, probably limits mobility within organisations, and based on a fallacious assumption that "like minded" people will work better as a team than a team comprised of people with diverse personalities and talents.  I couldn't think of anything worse than trying to work in a department full of people like me.

 

Using AI to further mechanise the mainly BS voodoo pseudo-science of psychometrics ain't progress. 

 

You poor buggers - if that's the future for work.  Tinder robots.


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  Reply # 2092368 18-Sep-2018 10:14
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You get a plus 1 for this post, but also for actually reading the privacy clauses! What kind of person does that? It is like reading the terms and conditions.

 

 





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