An asynchronous video test is a job interview that the interviewee conducts alone, and at no fixed time. Instead of meeting the hiring manager(s) face-to-face either in person or via a video conference, the candidate records themselves answering a set of questions using their webcam. Asynchronous video tests (or asynchronous video interviews) are one way in which employers are using asynchronous communication to drastically reduce the time and inconvenience involved in interviewing large numbers of prospective candidates.

The most obvious advantage of asynchronous video tests is that they don’t require hiring managers to fill their calendars with interview slots day after day, and so their other responsibilities don’t have to be sidelined during the recruitment process. Just as the candidate can record their responses when it suits them (without having to take time off from their current job), so can the hiring manager review responses from multiple candidates at their convenience. And if a candidate gives a deal-breakingly bad answer early on in their video, then the hiring manager doesn’t need to waste any more time on the interview. Clicking ‘stop’ is much faster and easier than winding up an in-person interview and tactfully encouraging an unsuitable candidate to leave your premises as quickly as possible. 

This process might sound harsh on the interviewees so far, but the flip side is that the vastly increased efficiency of asynchronous video tests means that hiring managers can invite a much higher number of candidates to interviews, which gives more hopeful jobseekers a chance to prove themselves.

And although it can seem weird for the interviewee at first, once they get used to the idea, candidates will actually find the asynchronous video tests take a great deal of the pressure and stress out of the interviewing process. We’ve all been in job interviews where our nervousness has caused us to say something we immediately wish we hadn’t. If this happens in an asynchronous video test, the candidate has no need to turn bright red and start wishing the ground would open up and swallow them all. Just delete the recording of the faux pas, and start again. 

Of course, hiring managers don’t want to make asynchronous video tests too easy for candidates, particularly if part of the purpose of the interview is to test the interviewee’s expertise in areas relevant to the job. So although candidates can choose when to start their interviews, most asynchronous video tests will apply a strict time limit once the candidate has seen the questions. This doesn’t necessarily mean that the interviewee has to answer immediately, just that they won’t have time to go away and conduct extensive research before answering.

Asynchronous video tests are commonly used by large companies looking to expand their workforce en masse, and for such large-scale recruitment drives, hiring managers are sometimes even replaced by AI, which improves the efficiency of the process even further. But with remote work and international teams becoming more common, of course, with the lockdowns enforced in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, even small companies are turning to asynchronous interviews when expanding their teams a little at a time.

And, while there are purpose-built software packages available for conducting asynchronous video tests, they’re not at all necessary for recruitment on a smaller scale. All an employer really needs is a good communication tool that offers a suitable mix of text and video messaging, and is customizable enough to set up asynchronous interviews. This is where we mention Woice and, with a smile and a wink, invite you to check out our pricing plans.