In the pile of paperwork and testing that is an application to a college or graduate program, an interview can be the real deal. One new site is trying to make interviews a normal step on the way to the diploma. Instead of flying prospective students in or arranging a cattle call day of interviews, Kira Talent allows students to interview virtually.
Interviews begin with a short introduction that plays for the candidate, followed by a practice question so that prospective students can get used to the software. As each interview question comes up, students have a few seconds to formulate an answer before giving a timed response. The key, according to CEO and co-founder Emilie Cushman, is to give recruiters a few minutes of interview questions so they can add a bit of dimension to the person they see on paper.
"I think it’s already shocking that we’re in 2013 and we’re making such critical decisions based on text and how well people can write," Cushman says. "When you’re recruiting people from all over the world, to base who you’re going to fly out to visit your university based on an essay — that's a big investment."
Though Kira Talent is being used more widely Canada than in the US, Cushman says that it's picking up speed — starting with the Yale School of Management. "I wouldn't say it's the wave of the future," Cushman says, "I'd say it's the wave of right now."