Business Insights

Automated Interview: Can this save your candidate filtering blues?

VoiceTree is not a hiring or headhunting agency, but like any other normal company we do need to hire people to join our team. And for what it’s worth, we decided to come up with a solution using our own technology skills to help us in the hiring process. Being a startup, we want to cut as much cost as possible like paying a headhunting agency to send us shortlisted sum of candidates.

Here is what we did:

VoiceTree - Voice Interview

  1. For our job postings of “Marketing & Sales Manager” we decided to include a line mentioning “To apply for this job post you also need to take an automated interview at 011-66020228” using your mobile phone which can be attempted only once from a number.
  2. On LinkedIN Jobs, we received around 122 application interests. We call this “interests” because, not 122 of those candidates read the instruction that they need to call on a number as a part of the hiring process.
    VoiceTree - Voice Interview - LinkedIN Case Study
  3. We were surprised at the numbers. We only got 6 candidates out of 122 (that’s ~5%) who actually read the complete job advertisement and follow the instructions to dial and participate in the Automated Voice Interview. They call a number, a set of 5 questions were played to them one by one and they were supposed to respond to each question, which was recorded by the system and upon completion emailed to us as a single audio file.
    VoiceTree - Voice Interview - LinkedIN Case Study

Let’s hold here for a moment and notice that so far this has potentially saved us from going through all the 122 applications for a simple reason that they didn’t bother to read the complete instructions and follow. Would you want to hire someone like that? We’d like to think, not so.

We’d like to pose this question to the HR people and headhunting agencies who do this kind of filtering and compare with the time and effort spent on the same. Can this process reduce your workload and save a lot of your time, and in return increase your team’s efficiency? Do let us know, we’d like to hear from you!

Now that we sorted the applications we got and only got 6 of them the next task was to listen to each one of the audio file and assess the candidate and make a final list of them to issue a “Call for Interview”. Listen to the audio interview sample below:

[wpaudio url=”/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/audio-voicetree-interview-sample.mp3″ text=”Voice Interview – Audio – Sample: Candidate”] (You can download the mp3 if your browser playback is flaky, esp. in Chrome)

One of our senior persons would go through the set of audio files received per candidate and do a screening of potential candidates. Listening to this audio interview would give a good idea to any senior HR professional to identify if the candidate should be called for an in person interview or not.

We felt that it was drastically reduced a lot of overhead when it comes to filtering candidates and the senior HR person did not need to go through the sum initially. After listening to the audio interview, the person can then look at the resume and issue a call.

We think the product is of great use and potential for any agency or company to support them in their hiring process. We’d be willing to let people test it out for free and gather feedback.

Another application is: What if you are into mass data gathering and surveys? Does this product sound useful? Do let us know 🙂

  1. Thats quite an interesting read. Filtering CVs constitute an important part of the whole Recruitment procedure. Being in the same industry, i know the kind of efforts it involves to screen CVs, sometimes to find out that none of them fits the bill.

    The only drawback of this method of churning out CVs is that the Job seekers, especially the experienced ones might take up other Opportunities before getting the time to place a call in order to apply for the Job as mentioned above. ‘Other Opportunities’ here refer to the ones that do not require them to make calls in order to apply. Thats like asking too much out of their heave Schedule!

  2. What I feel is yes! we do not really like to talk to robos and machines because we know the person whom we called up is either busy or he does not want to attend our call that time ( Our ego comes into play). I completely agree with your point.
    But when it comes to this kind of interviewing system, the caller has an inner feeling that somebody on the other side wants to listen actually what he is going to record. Also, having an Interview with such a system is a part of the hiring process and ultimately who takes it seriously is considered as Ankit said.
    So, this kind of system is a different thing as compared to Voice mails and things like that.

  3. I do find this idea really very very interesting. I mean imagine the amount of time/effort/workload that can be saved if we (a recruitment agency) implements this
    BUT at the same time, I get these couple of doubtful concerns
    1) what if the 116 people out of 122 which we’re assuming didn’t read the job description – many DID actually read the details but “chose” not to call. May be they weren’t attracted to the idea of speaking to a machine to give an interview. may be that was below their “ego” to be responding to a robo for a job of this position.
    2) my personal experience with answering machines (voicemails) has been similar. whenever i call some number which forwards me to an answering machine, i instinctively disconnect thinking (a) i’ll call back later (b) it feels weird talking to the wall

    just my 2 cents.

    PS: but i’m seriously considering ways/ideas in which I can implement some automated filtering process to streamline our recruitment work, because we work on volumes and have several clients waiting for us to deliver good profiles.

    1. Hey Jay,
      Thanks for your feedback. Here is my bit on same:
      I understand many people do not like talking to machines. But this is in concern to a job where candidates have to take some effort. Any candidates who cannot take an effort to attempt the same, in my view, are again not serious candidate.

      Apart from filtering the solution also has advantage of voice which is better than text as it tell me the communication skill, attitude and vocal presentation of the candidate.


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