Record? Or Reschedule?

A reader writes…

I have an interview coming up with a strong potential candidate who would be reporting to me directly, but would have a dotted-line to a manager from another department. I was just informed, however, that this other manager will not be able to make it to the interview as scheduled. I have rearranged my calendar and the person coming in is all set to go. Rather than setting a new date, would it be considered “bad practice” to tape record the interview so that my counterpart can listen to the candidate’s responses after the fact?

Dear, “Cassette Casanova,”

Never once during my 30+ years in the biz have I seen or heard of an interview being recorded. Not to say that it doesn’t happen– but I would lean against the idea.

I really only have 3 points to make here:

  1. For most people, interviews are an intense and even scary process! Throw a recorder in the mix, and your poor candidate is sure to feel really nervous and thrown off.
  2. Do YOU really want to be recorded? Again, you’re making a potentially uncomfortable situation even worse, in my opinion. Plus, when and why would you really want to listen to it again?
  3. Last, but certainly not least, if another manager will be impacted by the hire, then you ABSOLUTELY need to reschedule the interview so that he or she can participate. Otherwise, invite the candidate back for a second or third meeting (based on the availability of those involved). Placing a recording device on the table and saying, “Oh this… Bill was unable – uninterested – in joining us today, so I thought I’d record our conversation so he can listen to it when, or if, he’s able.” How impersonal and unprofessional can you get? I repeat… poor candidate!

I’d love to know if any of our readers have recorded interviews. How did it go?
Any job seekers poking around on this page been recorded? Do tell….!

1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. BJ
    Dec 14, 2010 @ 11:06:08

    I have never heard of this being done, but I think it is awful. You are right in saying that interviews are stressfull enough already without this being thrown into the equation. I don’t know if I would stay for such an interview. I would have to be desparate for a job to remain there. It shows a lack of trust in the candidates you are interviewing. Most interviewers take notes on your responses, which is fine for them to use for their own reference. I would probably start to be a little defensive in such a situation; not good for me or the interviewer.


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Anita Clew's blog posts are intended for general guidance and should never be taken as legal advice. In all instances where harassment, inequity, or unfair treatment is believed to be present, please consult your HR Department or legal representation.
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