But an Online Interview Scheduler is too impersonal for effective recruitment!

  • Her: But if we use an interview scheduler, I'm not making a personal connection with our applicants.
  • Me: What do you typically discuss with your applicants when you call them?
  • Her: What time they would like to come for their interview.
  • Me: So what exactly is value added about this conversation?
  • Her: That we took the time to call them.
  • Me: Really? Your candidates find it value added to play phone tag with you trying to nail down an interview time and date that they will ask you to probably confirm via email (or you do as a courtesy anyway)?
  • Her: Uhhhhh.....
candidate on hold

Long story short, this person did give online interview scheduling software a try....mainly after I promised to eat something (I think it was my hat) if she and her applicant's did not find it better to use an interview scheduling tool. Sure enough....she, rather sheepishly, admitted she was going to keep using it and ......much to her shock and amazement....some of the candidates expressed appreciation for the electronic scheduling process.

Duh.

Although I keep hearing the passionate objection that online interview scheduling robs the recruitment process of its humanity, consideration and value added recruiter greatness, I still can't give it any credence. The reality is going to the bank to pay your phone bill, written letters to pen pals and jobs in the Sunday paper are all things of the past....for two subtle changes to our world you may have encountered:

  • The Internet
  • Mobile Computing

For recruiters who still see some strange undefined value add to a phone call to schedule a meeting (and who probably still write letters to pen pals), at least think about your applicants carrying their smart phones everywhere! You don't think they would like to schedule an interview immediately and easily with the click of a button?

Even if (big if) I accepted the argument that a scheduling discussion with someone you may never even meet (as most recruiters don't even schedule their own interviews) was highly appreciated by candidates, I'm going to throw out some things that come up on the other side of that ledger:

  • 85% booking rate in the seven hours following your invitation (try doing that over the phone)
  • All the time saved from making and taking phone calls which allows you to do something truly recruitment valued added (like interviewing? or candidate sourcing? etc).
  • No miscommunications (candidates who have email confirmations of their interview time, date and location and who own mobile devices (pretty much everyone) show up at the right time.
  • Candidates who are happy and encouraged by your organization and efficiency (who really don't see a phone conversation to schedule a meeting as value added) will appreciate the 30 seconds it takes to book their interview...as opposed to whatever it takes to do it manually.

So I guess if you have that target applicant group that really likes to do things manually and over the phone to the point that they would be unhappy scheduling interviews online....and you don't see the benefits above as fair trade, you probably should keep booking by phone. While you do that, I'm going to go play Bejewelled Blitz on my Iphone and check and see if I have any interview invites.

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