You might have seen on Facebook, or even from starting your application that we’ve launched something new at Grant Thornton – the digital interview. As our mission at Spilling the Beans is to provide insight where we can, it seemed only right that we gave the new assessment a go ourselves.
So, on a rainy Thursday evening, after I’d wolfed down my spaghetti bolognese I fished my laptop out of my bag and went and got comfy in my bedroom ready to try out the video interview. The beauty of these interviews is that they can be done whenever suits you (within the given time frame of course). That’s got to be better than setting a time slot with your telephone interviewer, when you are then inevitably on the toilet, or out of signal when you get the dreaded phone call, which then leads to a not so fun game of telephone tennis. Anyway, I digress.
Having logged into my computer, I can tell you that I’d already got two things wrong. Propped up in my bed by a few cushions, with only my bedside lamp creating a nasty glow on the screen didn’t set the best scene for my interview. Secondly let’s face it, after an eight and a half hour day at work followed by an hour commute I wasn’t looking my best. While these video interviews are designed to make you feel comfortable, and to have the best experience possible, it’s still important to get the basics right. Firstly, I’d advise you to dress as you would for any interview – this is the first time we get to see you, make a great first impression. Secondly, set yourself up somewhere that you won’t get disturbed, and use the practice time to make sure that there isn’t a window casting a nasty glare over the screen, and that ultimately you feel as comfortable as possible.
Having opened up the email inviting me to do my interview, I quickly swatted up on all the useful hints and tips within the email; how to get your laptop set up properly; how the interview works; how long you get to digest the question before answering it (it’s 30 seconds by the way) and loads of other helpful stuff. I then continued on my digital assessment journey to the practice section. By this point I felt almost as nervous as I’m sure you will when you’re doing the interview yourself, and I’ve been working here for over three years! What I was really pleased to see then was that you get as much practice time as you want. During this time you can try out a few questions that will be in a similar style to those you’ll be asked in the actual interview. This will also give you the chance to make sure your computer is working properly, that the sound is right, and is also a good chance to decide whether you want to see the video of yourself as you make it. Personally, I preferred to turn the video view off so that I couldn’t see myself, as it’s horribly tempting to look at the screen rather than in the camera. This is an interview and eye contact, albeit through the camera, is important.
Finally, I clicked ‘Begin interview’ where I was welcomed by a member of the recruitment team. Each question is asked in a short video clip, and then remains typed in a viewing box in case you forget. You then have three minutes to record your answer to the question, and of course if you are finished before time, you can move on to the next question. Seeing the interviewer in the video clips made me feel more settled, as though I was talking to someone more familiar who could empathise with my situation, unlike in a telephone interview where there is only a voice at the end of the phone. With all the video practice under my belt, I felt comfortable completing this new type of interview.
The questions themselves were all very similar to those we’ve had in the past. Competency based questions, centred around our CLEARR values. Questions which, if you’ve done your research and have read a number of our blogs, you should feel fairly comfortable answering.
Finally, I’d completed the interview and a closing video clip from the team told me I’d find out within six days if I’d been successful. This made me feel super excited until I remembered, I’d already got the job. Lucky me.
Hopefully, having read this blog you’ll feel more comfortable about the new video interview. All interviews are watched by one of our recruitment team from start to finish, so try your best to impress.
If you have any questions, as always feel free to drop us a message on this blog or on the forums. If not, see you at the assessment centre!