Friday, April 25, 2008

Stand Out From the Crowd with Interview on Demand

Interview on Demand is a great tool for job seekers, as well as hiring managers, to send video resumes and conduct video interviews of candidates.

I was impressed by the service, so I called Peggy McKee, VP Sales & Marketing of Interview on Demand, to demand an interview of her! But how much did I really have to demand? Peggy’s in marketing.

I learned that Interview on Demand is an interesting way to stand out from your competition, but won’t work well as a submission to jobs listed on Job Boards or Websites. Instead, Interview on Demand is structured to work well with networking or social networking contacts, as a way to brand your Subject Matter Expertise.

reCareered: Peggy, thanks for your time today to explain your interesting new service, Interview on Demand. Can you give an overview of the service?

Peggy McKee: First, Interview on Demand is free to any job seeker. In less than 25 minutes, you can record a video introduction with any webcam, review it until you like the way you look and sound, and post it on a personal webpage.

reCareered: Can you add other things to your personal webpage and video?

Peggy McKee: You can link your resume, cover letter, work samples, report samples, power point presentations, graphics, etc. You can upload and attach anything you feel would be a valuable addition to your personal brand.

reCareered: How would a job seeker best benefit from Interview on Demand?

Peggy McKee: Interview on Demand gives job seekers great content to send to their personal networks, LinkedIN networks, Facebook Networks, or other social networks or online groups they are active with.

reCareered: Can you give an example?

Peggy McKee: Let’s say you’ve just recorded your video introduction on Video on Demand, and
you’ve attached your resume and some work samples. Let’s say you are a Java developer. There are a number of online user groups, in Yahoo for instance, where you could write an intro, and publish a link to your personal website and video introduction. Then you could make an email template, and send it to your Level 1 LinkedIN contacts. You can also include a link to your personal site on your digital resume and LinkedIN profile.

reCareered: Are there any risks to passive job seekers who don’t want their current employers to know they are looking?

Peggy McKee: Since we don’t send video files, the personal videos can’t be copied into YouTube. Our videos are embedded into our website only, and we don’t have search engines index personal home pages. In that way, the candidate controls who sees their information.

reCareered: Sounds like a great tool for job seekers looking to get noticed. What’s the downside

Peggy McKee: Interview on Demand isn’t meant to be submitted to job boards, or corporate websites, because they are text based, and aren’t structured to work with websites or video content. A simple solution is to include links to your personal website on your digital resume and cover letter.

reCareered: What other kinds of services does Interview on Demand offer?

Peggy McKee: Interview on Demand also offers services to HR departments who want more effective pre-screening methods, especially if recruiting from outside their local area or in place of expensive campus recruiting programs. An HR department or hiring manager might develop a list of 5 questions, and email the questions and a link to a prospective candidate. The candidate would answer questions via video (please get dressed for an interview first!), and when completed, send the video to the employer through our site. This can offset the cost of first interview travel (if recruiting out of area), Campus Recruiting, and time and cost of videoconferences. Candidates can be given the option to review and re-record their interview, or one time only, based on employer preference. Interviews can be forwarded to other managers, if a candidate is felt to be a good fit for a different group.

reCareered: How can outside recruiters use Interview on Demand?

Peggy McKee: Many recruiters send highlight bullet points of their Most Placeable Candidates. While bullet point summaries are standard practice, Interview on Demand can give a number of distinct advantages. First, it’s the candidate giving highlights about themselves, not the headhunter pitching. Second, it’s video, more interactive, and better shows the soft skills and personality of the candidate. A recruiter can have their best candidates record an introductory video, assemble a personal webpage, and the recruiter can send to targeted clients who might need these skills. Since few recruiters send video, this is a great way to get your candidates to stand out from the crowd.

reCareered: All this sounds kind of difficult for a non-technical job seeker.

Peggy McKee: Not at all. Interview on Demand is set up so that even your Grandmother can use it. And we’re still small enough that users get personal attention to any technical questions they might have. We are extremely responsive, and can make improvements quickly based on user suggestions.

reCareered: Thanks for the explanation Peggy, great service.

After playing with Interview on Demand, I’m sold.

However, to make Interview on Demand work for you, there’s some work to do first. Interview on demand works well for highly defined Subject Matter Experts, but isn’t a good fit for generalists. Why? Generalists haven’t branded themselves effectively, so they don’t have anything to promote other than your movie star looks.

So unless you’re the spitting image of Jessica Alba or George Clooney, develop your personal brand and Subject Matter Expertise FIRST, before investing your energy in Interview on Demand.

If you’d like more information, a free 30 minute resume consultation, or some advice about your career transition, just email your resume to reCareered at, and we'll schedule a time to talk.

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