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Candidates: Are you interviewing and need support?

Principle HR

The majority of these roles required direct approaches and as Audrey Hughes, Managing Director of Principle HR said:

“These roles required a very specific skill set and competencies which were not readily available in Ireland.”

Typical Selection Process (before Automated Video Interviewing)

  1. Initial Screening: A conversation to verify the candidate’s skills via competency-based questions, followed by background verification
  2. Skype Interview: A more in-depth interview from which Principle prepares detailed interview reports. The client then choses which candidates to bring forward for a face to face.
  3. Client Interview: “3-4 hours of back to back interviews with 2 senior managers at any one time.”

International candidates were flown in and accommodated. Depending on location, candidates could be invited to attend a second face to face interview or progress directly through the offer process.

Ideal for Recruiting across Time Zones

Principle typically added 5 viewers from the client company to view the video responses for each role.  Viewers would not all be located in Ireland and often in different time zones.  Audrey added that it is ideal when you have hiring managers and candidates in different locations and time zones.

Video Interview Replaces Skype Calls

Video interviewing has replaced the Skype interview process.  The Skype process denied clients the opportunity of evaluating the candidates first hand and introduced a level of bias from the decision being made from the recruiter’s interview notes.  Principle has seen that video interviewing is better both in terms of the clients involvement and buy-in, also how the technology lends itself to a more objective recruitment process.

“They didn’t just want to rely on the CV – they like being able to see the candidates on camera and how they engaged with the process.Each viewer had to provide notes and ratings for each interview without seeing the other users comments, any candidate receiving 3 stars or more would have been interviewed so everyone works within the Sonru platform independently removing any influence or bias.” – Audrey Hughes, Managing Director of Principle HR

Verification Not Volume in the Recruitment Process

Given the specific skill set requirements and subsequently smaller candidate pool, Principle has seen that using video interviewing allows you to identify quality candidates, an ideal solution for clients to streamline and to simplify the entire recruitment process.

“Video Interviewing helps us to validate their CV’s and to verify their skills through competency-based questions.It’s not just about who is on screen; it’s the content of the answers they give. They have to think on the spot so it gave clients a lot more insight into the candidate’s abilities. This enabled a quicker selection process for face to face interviews.” – Audrey

Culture Fit and Communication Style

Video Interviewing enabled the viewers to gauge personality and soft skills; as the right fit within the company was hugely important for the client.

According to Audrey the viewers were very interested in the candidates’ soft skills. Style, presence and cultural fit were really important for them, even for the non-client facing roles, adding:

“Video interviewing gave them a great indication of this, showing their presence on camera, eye contact and verbal or nonverbal communication style.  It enabled the client to reject candidates that looked strong on paper but whose communication style conflicted with their own corporate culture. Video interviewing proved very effective in identifying these characteristics.”

Video Interviews Allow You to “Meet” the Candidates

Given that the hiring managers were located both in the US and Ireland, video interviewing proved to be a very effective way of handling the frequency and geographical challenges of these interviews.

Regardless of location, time is at a premium for every client and Principle has seen that clients want to know who they’re meeting prior to the actual first interview. Successful applicants were brought in for a series of back to back interviews lasting 3-4 hours, with 2 senior managers at any one time.

From Principle’s experience this process allows the client to “try before you buy”. Principle’s clients maintain that video interviewing is beneficial for the candidates too by not having to take time off to travel from the outset of the process.

“It’s important to get the shortlist right because it can be an expensive process flying people in and putting them up only to decide within 10 minutes of meeting them that they are not the right fit for the company.The reality is you do make up your mind in the first few minutes, it might be cliché but you do form an opinion.With video interviewing, clients are able to form a positive opinion of the candidate and build on that when they eventually meet face to face.”  – Audrey

Reassigning Applicants to More Suitable Roles

In line with their culture fit ethos, the client particularly liked being able to go back, even 6 months later, and re-view a video and put candidates forward for an alternative role they felt would be more suitable based on their video interview.

Audrey is certain that if the client was reading just a CV, they would have forgotten about the person. Video interviewing allows them to connect with the person and to retain the interview and even reassign candidates to other roles further down the line.


Video interviewing worked well for Principle with an improved method of verifying a candidate.  Being able to assess culture fit, communication style and providing an opportunity to “meet” candidates – were highlighted as the key benefits to their overseas client.

For Audrey, being able to go back and revisit the video interviews was a favorite benefit.

“From an agency perspective, we deal with so many candidates every day. So having more than a face to a name adds depth to a person,” continues Audrey.

In terms of landing this specific client contract, Audrey admitted there were other executive search firms in the equation; but video interviewing gave Principle the competitive edge.

“Combining our bespoke service with Sonru’s video interviewing platform, allowed Principle to deliver a superior client service,” concludes Audrey.