Skip to main content

Site Navigation

Site Search


Will the Pandemic Permanently Impact the Future of Interviewing and Onboarding?

March 30, 2021

Will the shift to remote work change the recruiting landscape for years to come? How can leaders effectively onboard team members virtually? Here is what you need to know.

More than one year after many of us started working from home, there appears to be light at the end of the tunnel, but how will changes brought on by the pandemic impact recruiting in the future?

How has the pandemic changed recruiting?

A lot has changed in terms of hiring practices over the past twelve months. If you had asked me a year ago if a company would hire an Executive without meeting them in-person, I would have said…no way! Since that time, we have seen clients hire Sr. Executives and Board Members with the process being entirely virtual.

More interest in personality assessment tools

There has also been spiked interest in the use of personality assessment tools to increase the likelihood of a proper culture fit. This gives employers a degree of comfort that they may lose assessing candidates on a screen. Tools such as Predictive Index are becoming quite popular. The employer completes a short profile of what personal characteristics will allow a candidate to succeed in a role and this is matched with the characteristics of the final pool of candidates. These tools are not the only lens used to evaluate candidates but have proven effective and will most likely remain attractive as we enter the new normal.

Will some changes become permanent?

No one knows exactly what the hiring process will look like as we return to the office but rest assured things will be different.

Parts of interview process could remain virtual

Companies have realized that the initial rounds of interviews can be much more efficient virtually. At the most senior levels, the interviews are typically conducted by a Search Committee. It is much easier to coordinate virtual interviews for a group than in-person interviews. Especially when meeting multiple candidates in the first round. There is a strong likely hood that the second round of interviews will remain virtual as well. As happens frequently today, the final round is likely to be done the old-fashioned way……in person.

Virtual onboarding continues to challenge employers and new employees

A challenge for many employers has been virtual onboarding. It has been difficult to assimilate new employees into a team environment. Successful organizations have compensated for the lack of in-person onboarding with structured and well-organized plans.


Many new employees have had one-on-one virtual meetings with every member of the team in the first weeks of employment. They have also have regularly scheduled virtual meetings with their supervisor multiple days per week. In addition, tools such as Microsoft Teams and other platforms have made it easier to connect and see co-workers and supervisors at the click of a button.

As Sue Pardus mentions in her recent blog, “We have many clients who have done a really good job using video technology to onboard remotely, but it is much more difficult. The key, again, is open and frequent communication. Successful onboarding relies much more on planning and interaction with the manager. Having a trusted “buddy” or assigned partner who can walk the new employee through the organization’s processes, systems, culture, etc., is essential. This requires a lot more proactive work because you can’t just pop into someone’s office!”

These changes have allowed businesses to continue hiring and on-boarding in a different way than anyone would have expected. It is quite possible that many of these new approaches are here to stay.

Check out our blog, 2021 Recruiting Outlook for more on how the shift to remote work will impact businesses in 2021 and beyond.

Questions? Contact us.

Stay informed. Get all the latest news delivered straight to your inbox.

Also in Business Blog

up arrow Scroll to Top