Retail is Australia’s second largest employing industry and almost one-third (32%) of Australian retail trade workers are aged between 15 and 24.

With these statistics in mind, Jane Bianchini, founder of Sydney start-up, Alcami Interactive, found there was a lack of automation and digital innovation to engage younger generations in the recruitment process.

This led Bianchini to use her IT and recruitment experience to develop Alcami Interactive, specialising in digital interviews, five years ago.

The interview technology has been designed for high volume screening of candidates. For instance, large retailers receiving hundreds or even thousands of applications, which may be the case when hiring for Christmas casuals, who are often Generation Z, digital native and have high expectations when it comes to day to day experiences.

“Our next-generation digital interviewing replaces the more traditional phone screening process during recruitment. This saves businesses a lot of time by providing more flexibility of recruiting outside of usual 9am to 5pm business hours, eliminates the need to align calendars with candidates and removes the chance of missed calls or messages,” Bianchini told Retailbiz.

“Short-listed applicants will be invited to participate in a video interview via our portal and will be required to answer three to five questions from a library of pre-recorded questions. The responses can be completed in their own time within five days after the initial interview invitation via web cam or a mobile device,” she explained.

“Questions can now be more aligned with company values to better connect with candidates. For example, instead of the cliched, why do you want to work for us? Businesses may ask something like, what is one thing you do in your daily life to support the environment?

“The retail industry is renowned for high employee turnover but if employers can improve their connection with candidates right from the recruitment stage, they may be more likely to stay with the company longer.

“We are seeing high uptake of video interviews and the technology isn’t going anywhere. Moving forward, I expect to see more mass-personalisation with employers or their brand advocates being filmed asking the digital interview questions.”