Interviewing Avatars

Imagine that you go to interview a candidate over Skype or even a phone call and the first thing you see or hear is: “Hi, my name is Hank, and I am an avatar. I will answer all your questions about Nick factually and completely, as if you’re talking directly to Nick. Are you still looking to fill this position?”

That’s a quote from a blog post about HR and hiring issues. In this post, the author talks about a new system that allows a job seeker to use an avatar as a way to quickly apply for thousands of jobs. While this might be nice for the applicant, would any of you want to interview an avatar? Maybe you would a few times, or maybe you’d even start to like this as a way to get some basic information about a candidate. Of course, if the candidate has loaded up all sorts of technical facts from Inside SQL Server or How Would You Move Mount Fuji, then maybe you’re less interested.

One one hand this is scary. On the other it’s awesome. I’d love to be able to answer some questions and provide some data about my career and goals and let an avatar go through initial screens. I wouldn’t want this to be used anywhere past the initial interview, but certainly it would help me to present a little more of myself in an interactive format. It could be a nice brand, and how fun would it be to interact with Steve’s avatar?

In some sense, we might move in this direction. After all, this just levels the playing field between candidates and employers. Plenty of recruiting and HR people use their own software or algorithms to make quick decisions about a large number of applicants. I certainly know that you need to stand out with your brand and ensure your resume and online profile attract attention and this could help with that.

Think about this. Is there a way to better present the data and information about ourselves, using technology to respond and help ensure that the position is a good fit for each of us? Hiring managers might use this, why not us? Actually, they are using Alex and Mya. Would this be a better way for you to control and show off some of your work? Even have the avatar show how you solved problems or responded to different situations? While this seems silly or science fiction, I wouldn’t be surprised to see this type of avatar-avatar interaction being used early in the process to decide if both parties should move forward.

Steve Jones

The Voice of the DBA Podcast

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About way0utwest

Editor, SQLServerCentral
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