Companies are constantly looking to reduce costs and integrate new technologies into their operations. For example, a lot of companies have stopped conducting face-to-face interviews with candidates who are not local. Instead, they've switched over to video interviews, which can save them thousands of dollars in travel expenses and working time.
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However, new technologies can have their drawbacks. Once again, look at video interviewing, which is known to dampen the personalities of candidates. Both candidates and hiring managers can lose out on some important interpersonal interactions in video interviews.
The good news is that virtual reality technology may be able to help us inject more personality into our remote meetings and interviews. Just take a look at this demo from Microsoft:
Before delving any further into the potential of V.R. as an interviewing technology, let's look at two important stats:
The number of active V.R. users is predicted to reach 171 million by 2018.
Revenue from virtual reality head-mounted displays is expected to grow from $685 million in 2015 to $3.89 billion in 2018.
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So, it looks like virtual reality is here to stay. But how can it be integrated into the interview process?
My Virtual Reality Experience
I purchased a new phone in March – one that came with a free V.R. device. I was excited to try it – although it took me a month to take the device out of the box. When I did, though, it was great: On Memorial Day weekend, I got to go skiing in 80-degree weather!
I saw an opportunity for recruiting with the device when I downloaded an application called "Teleport Call VR." This application is extremely neat. It allows you to create an environment and then "teleport" other people into the environment to hang out with you. I'm planning to take this a step further and use it to create my own V.R. office environment.
So, V.R. offers the opportunity for you to create a virtual interview space and then invite your candidates into that space. This is a great way to restore some of the aspects of a face-to-face interview that are lost during video interviews, where you and your candidate are just pictures on a screen to one another.
That being said, V.R. is not yet a perfect replacement for face-to-face interactions. Some things are still lacking. For example, V.R. only caters to your auditory and visual senses. There's no sense of smell, no temperature. You can't shake a person's hand or accurately assess their body language.
I see a huge opportunity for virtual reality interviewing software in the future. I found V.R. to be a much more fun experience than a video call, though I don't think it can compare to a face-to-face meeting just yet.
Still, there's always the chance that new advances in the V.R. technology will change that. For now, I think it's worth keeping an eye on. V.R. might just be the future of interviewing.
Tanya Bourque is the CEO of OpExpert.