Unprecedented times. This has to be one of the most used phrases over the last few weeks. The monumental impact the COVID-19 outbreak has had on so many lives and how it has turned our world as we know it upside down so quickly is unbelievable. With offices all over the world emptying out, employees working from home and supermarket shelves bare, companies are facing tough choices. One of which is what to do with their hiring plans. So, what now? There probably isn’t a single business out there that has been unaffected by COVID-19. Uncertainty is not good for business, people or the economy. But one thing is for sure, the choices companies make over the coming days and weeks will no doubt impact on how they navigate and come through this crisis. Roughly 50% of our client base has frozen their recruitment (especially those within aviation, hospitality and other highly impacted sectors) whilst others aren’t showing signs of slowing down and have simply moved their hiring processes online at record speed. And while for most of our clients this has been a seamless process thanks to their tech infrastructure, some are choosing to put jobs on hold or defer their candidates’ interview dates. However, with it being unclear how long the current situation could last, these companies are in real danger of losing out on talent to their competitors. Chris Jackson, our Founding Director commented “Some clients are being really open-minded to adapt within the current climate and they’re the ones that will probably come out of this period of uncertainty in better shape, equipped and ready once the recovery starts. There’s also going to be potentially less competition at the moment for some of the most sought-after talent, so those that are prepared to take the plunge will probably be the ones that benefit the most in the longer term. We’re always here to help and support our clients in whatever way we can do to accommodate this.” 1. Benefits of remote hiring Access to the market has probably never been this good and with most people working from home, it is easier to have a conversation about making a career move with them. Access to a bigger talent pool is another major benefit to hiring remotely. With many EU countries on lockdown, using the likes of Microsoft Teams, Google Hangouts, Skype or Zoom means you can still access these candidates quicker, and without the cost of flying them in for a face to face interview. 2. Remote interviewing A strong online employer brand is crucial to attracting talent that will have to rely on your digital presence to experience your company and its culture during the remote interview process. Luckily, we live in the age of connectivity with tools like Microsoft Teams, Google Hangouts, Skype, Zoom etc. at your fingertips. Paired with phone interviews these will be your primary communication channels to connect with candidates during the recruitment process. Many of these tools will also let you record interviews and watch them back later to help make objective hiring decisions, even if you're not meeting the candidate in person. We can also help you facilitate all types of remote testing that is a great way of evaluating a candidate’s code. For example, many of our clients use Codility, an online technical interview and coding challenge to help evaluate candidate’s code easily. If you’re looking for a new role check out our latest vacancies interviewing remotely. 3. Delayed start dates or remote onboarding? When it comes to the onboarding process many companies take this experience digital too. Check out our Guide to Remote Onboarding to get some inspiration. With the help of websites, documentation, and videos alongside digital communication with their team and manager, this process can be just as welcoming as onboarding at the office. Download Your Guide to Remote Onboarding It will be interesting to see if COVID-19 revolutionises where and how we work in the future even after the restrictions are lifted. Whether remote hiring will ever become the preferred method of hiring remains to be seen. Working remotely is already mainstream for so many professions and proving that it works in this situation could revolutionise a lot of office-based jobs in the future, making a remote workforce a reality going forward for many companies.
You expect lots of questions to come your way during the interview but are you prepared for your interview to be a two-way street? Preparing a set of questions you can ask the hiring manager at the end of an interview will show your interest in the role and company, but it's also the prime opportunity to find out if the job is right for you. Not having any questions makes you look unprepared and uninterested, so make sure you research the company and make notes of topics you can ask about. Your best bet is to prepare at least five questions in case some are answered during the interview or you forget any. Here are a few suggestions about what to ask when it’s your turn to call the shots. Have I answered all your questions? – This gives you a good chance to clarify any questions or doubts the interviewer still has. You can also expand on answers you may have given during the interview and it will give you a good idea of how you’re doing so far. What is your company culture like? – It’s a good idea to find out what the company’s philosophy is and if you can see yourself fitting into their environment. What are the day to day responsibilities of this job? – Hopefully, this will shed some light on what your day to day in your new job would look like and if it sounds like something you want to be doing. What are your expectations for this role during the first 30 days, 60 days, year? – Find out what expectations they have for the role to see if it aligns with what you’re looking for in your new role. What are the biggest challenges you’re facing? – Asking about their challenges not only makes them think but also is a way of uncovering trends and issues in the industry. Who do you consider to be your major competitor? – You should have already researched the company’s competitors but getting your interviewer’s insights can be useful and could be different from the information available on the internet. What are the challenges of this position? – This question will help you identify areas the role will be focussing on over the next months. What qualities are the most important for doing well and advancing at this company? – This question can uncover information that’s not in the job description and gives you a chance to show you’re a good fit for the team. Is this a new position? If not, why did the person before me leave this role? – Asking this will uncover what happened to the person doing the job before and why and how they left. If you had to sum up the company in three words what would they be? – This can give you an interesting and spontaneous insight into what the company is really like and gets the interviewer thinking. What do you like best about working for this company? – Asking your interviewer about their personal experience at the company is a great way to gain insight into the company and to make a more personal connection. Watch for any telltale signs here in their expression or body language that might indicate some issues or underlying negativity. Where is the company headed in the next 5 years and how can I grow in this job? – Find out if the company is growing and if there is room for you to progress your career over the coming years. Can you tell me a bit about the team I would be working with? – Some companies will volunteer this information and even introduce you to the people you’d be working with during the interview process. If not, it’s a good idea to clarify what the team looks like and what the pecking order is. What are the next steps in the interview process? – This is a great way of finding out how many stages are left in the hiring process and clarifies when you can expect to hear from them.