Case Study: College Possible
How College Possible Scales Their Hiring And Saves 20 Minutes Per Candidate With Spark Hire
College Possible is a nonprofit organization dedicated to making college admission and success possible for low-income students.
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About College Possible
College Possible is a nationally growing nonprofit organization founded in Minnesota in 2000 and dedicated to making college admission and success possible for low-income students through an intensive curriculum of coaching support. The organization serves 30,000 students in Minnesota, Milwaukee, Omaha, Portland, Philadelphia and Chicago.
Goals for Video Interviewing
College Possible was growing and their recruiting process was not built to scale. They wanted to improve their interview scheduling process and more efficiently screen a large pool of candidates.
Q&A with AmeriCorps and VISTA Manager, Chad Karlsson
What inspired you to look into video interviewing?
Our organization has been rapidly growing and we knew that we couldn’t keep handling our processes the way we had been! We were looking for a solution that would let us screen more applicants in a timely manner, and using the recorded interview options with Spark Hire has made that possible.
Did Spark Hire replace a similar tool or is this the first time your team is using video interviewing?
We had previously used Skype for video interviews, but the work of arranging interviews across time zones and for large numbers of applicants made it too cumbersome to use.
What criteria did you have in mind for a video interviewing solution?
We were looking for a system that would allow recorded responses. All of the great features that Spark Hire has built such as customizing the answer duration and the number of retakes has been incredibly useful.
Describe your selection process and what you found most attractive about Spark Hire when signing up.
We initially selected Spark Hire due to its integration with ApplicantPro, which let us easily connect our applicant tracking system. We’ve continued to use it because we’ve been able to process many more candidates in an effective manner and have a record of the interviews.
What was getting started with Spark Hire like?
We had one brief phone call with the sales team at Spark Hire who was able to get us started. We were able to use it immediately to process candidates. The whole process was incredibly quick, and the whole Spark Hire team was very welcoming.
What are some of the results you’ve seen with Spark Hire?
With Spark Hire, we save an average of 20 minutes per applicant we process and we’ve processed hundreds of applicants using the system in less than a year. When you consider the cost of staff time, this is a huge money saver for our organization. In addition, we have been able to make better hiring decisions by not having to rely on interview notes, but having the actual interviews available to reference.
What was your team’s hiring process prior to using Spark Hire?
Previously, we would either use over the phone screens or conduct Skype interviews. Both processes required a large time commitment to arrange meetings and deal with complications of unavailability and technical challenges. We have never experienced these issues with Spark Hire.
How does video interviewing fit into your hiring process?
We currently utilize video interviews as our initial screen for many of our full time positions, allowing us to share our top ten or so candidates with decision-makers for a final shortlist. We can then invite the top performers for in-person interviews. This saves time, makes sure candidates coming in already have the skills we’re looking for, and allow us to make our in-person interviews more about fit within our organization.
How do you get your team members to buy in to video interviewing?
Showing our team that we could maintain the recorded interviews and share them boosted everyone’s confidence, but in order to roll it out, we started with a small interview group for a few positions. Once our HR team demonstrated it would be an effective tool, it didn’t take much convincing to get the rest of our teams on board.
What is the biggest impact that video interviewing has on your hiring process?
The time savings are immense and allow our team to focus on getting applicants more than processing them.
What was your aha moment -- the moment you knew you loved Spark Hire?
In our first batch of applicants, we had a candidate who did a phenomenal job responding to our prompts and showed us that even in a recorded interview, you could see a candidate’s personality. The interview also helped us show all of our teams that recorded interviews were a great option.
Why should other nonprofit organizations look into video interviewing?
When you have limited resources in an HR team, a common challenge in small nonprofits, utilizing video interviews can help your team meet all of the needs of the organization even during the busiest recruitment times. It is a great tool that saves time and leads to better hiring decisions.
What is your favorite aspect of video interviewing?
I love having access to recorded interviews after the fact! It has proven to be invaluable when bringing new people into the hiring process. I can't state enough how valuable being able to go back and reference interviews is!
What are some things you love about Spark Hire?
Ease of use is huge - we can send a link to as many applicants as we’d like and the site guides them through the process. Spark Hire makes the interview process no work for us! We love the interface as well - everything we use is easy to find. Finally, the support from Spark Hire is great - we haven’t had many issues, but whenever we have a question we get a response very quickly!
What are three words that describe your experience working with Spark Hire?
Convenient, easy, effective.