Social Insurance Institution, Statistics Finland and The Finnish Funding Agency for Innovation: Public sector can be modern too!
Kela (Social Insurance Institution), Tilastokeskus (Statistics Finland) and Tekes (The Finnish Funding Agency for Innovation) are part of Finnish public sector that is often seen more oldish and institutional than private sector not to start to speak about hip start-ups.
However, the role of public sector is huge in many respects. Firstly, the size of public sector in Finland was 58 percent of GDP in 2013 and it employs around 25 percent of the entire workforce. So why can’t it be equally appealing employer as well? We interviewed above-mentioned brave forerunners about their experiences of video interviews. To begin with, Social Insurance Institution conducted video interviews and received a lot of feedback especially from the younger candidates who praised their image as unprejudiced and youthful – thanks to the usage of modern interviewing method.
Am I too old to answer a video interview?
“There were suspicions on how candidates will succeed answering video questions because of candidates were different ages”, commented Liisa Siika-aho from Social Insurance Institution. As the deadline was getting closer those fears diminished after they received a whole bunch of diverse answers. The age range of candidates varied from people on their twenties to sixties and there were significant differences on the ways to answer. However, this didn’t affect on the outcome of the video interviews: to get to know to candidates better than their CV and cover letter. Siika-aho elaborates: ”Instagram generation is more natural in front of the camera but what matters is the content and it was differently presented by different age groups.”
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Video interviewing is a powerful screening tool that allows you to quickly obtain more information of candidates. This comes especially handy when selecting the best candidates for a trainee or internship position when the number of applicants can be exceptionally large. You are able to get a better impression of the candidates and video interviewing gives an equal opportunity to larger number of applicants to show their personality and know-how. HRD Manager Pilvi Määttänen from The Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation describes: “There were many candidates in the large candidate pool and we wanted to get to know as many of them as possible, but video interviews also enabled us to reduce the amount of personal interviews”.
Moreover, HR Planner Anna Leppäkoski from Statistics Finland emphasized that “by conducting video interviews recruiters can screen and meet actually much more candidates, yet keep the recruiting process efficient and of a high standard and leave out those who are not the best fit.”
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What’s the most important criteria when choosing which applicants to invite for a face-to-face interview? Recruiters emphasize the importance of motivation and suitability for the role, which Siika-aho commented on: “With video interviews the first round of screening was efficient but we were also able to form more throughout picture of candidates fairly fast and leave some candidates with good CVs out from personal interview”. Furthermore, large trainee recruitment usually involves closely resemble group, which makes the differences between the top candidates tiny. Therefore personality, motivation and suitability for the role are better indicators on who to invite for a personal interview – the things that you won’t necessarily find out from CV.