Residency

Video chat interviews

Residency Program Insider, October 15, 2020

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Editor’s Note: The following is adapted from HCPro’s book, Resident Recruitment: From ERAS to Match. For more information about this book or to order your copy, click here.

There are as many ways to organize and manage interview days as there are training programs. Each program must determine what logistically works in its unique context. An option is to use a video chat application like Skype for remote one-on-one interviewing. This approach can be used when interviews are cancelled or postponed due to weather or illness-related issues and rescheduling is difficult or impossible.

The following are the advantages of this option:

  • It’s faster than a face-to-face interview
  • Eliminates many of the costs associated with a face-to-face interview (e.g., travel and lodging)
  • Requires less effort for programs and candidates
  • Allows long-distance candidates to easily interview
  • Weaker candidates can be culled at the beginning of the process
  • Easy to see if candidates are focused or simply reading from their notes


The following are the disadvantages of this option:

  • Technical issues—bad signal, connection, background noise—could interrupt the video call
  • The camera angle may present candidate with visual distortion
  • Difficult to read a candidate’s body language
  • Finding a common time to schedule the call may be difficult
  • Building a rapport via video chat can be challenging
  • Compared to a telephone call, both parties have to look professional and focused during a video call
     



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