Google recently released an artificial intelligence (AI)-based preparation tool that helps job seekers prepare better for interviews. The tool, called Interview WarmupOpens a new window , boasts of having the only tried-and-true method of getting better at answering interview questions.
How Interview Warmup Works
The Google tool starts by asking a few familiar interview questions, like â€œCan you please tell me a bit about yourself?â€ and â€œPlease tell me why you would be a good fit for this role?â€ It also asks questions about previous work experience, how the candidate handles certain situations and skill-specific questions about certain jobs. The tool currently supports skill-specific questions related to ecommerce, data analytics, IT support, project management, user experience, and roles stemming from Google Career Certificates program. The questions on the tool are selected by industry experts.
Once the job seeker answers a question, the tool transcribes it in real-time and provides feedback using machine learning. Besides this, the tool’s machine learning also identifies certain job-related terms and phrases that are overused and generates common â€œtalking pointsâ€ to improve responses. The transcripts and audio from the mock interviews are not saved. However, job candidates can copy or download these transcripts.
According to Jesse HainesOpens a new window , director, Grow with Google initiative in the U.S., â€œInterviewing in a new field can be hard, especially if you don’t have access to friends, family or mentors in the field who can help you practice and prepare. Preparing for interviews will always take a lot of work, but we hope this tool can make it a little easier for anyone to become more confident and grow comfortable with interviewing.â€ She further said, â€œYou can see how much time you spend talking about areas like your experience, skills and goals. Your responses aren’t graded or judged, and you can answer questions as many times as you want. It’s your own private space to practice, prepare and get comfortable.â€
Tool Receives Appreciation and Some Caution
The free-to-use tool has received appreciation from a few industry players and organizations. For example, Chris Russell, managing director, RecTech Media, said, â€œAnything that helps you practice interviewing is a good idea. The ability to practice even when you can’t find another person is the main draw. It also helps you craft better responses based on feedback.â€Â
Carolyn Kleiman, a career coach and resume consultant, ResumeBuilder.com and a senior career counselor at George Mason University, saidOpens a new window , â€œOther products typically offer a recording of the practice session, which is then either sent to someone who reviews it and provides feedback or to the user for self-evaluation. These tools can also be helpful, but Interview Warmup breaks down your answer and lets you know what is good and why and what could be improved, all on its own. The feedback is also nonjudgmental and unbiased, something you won’t get practicing with another person.â€Â
Another big advantage, according to industry players, is that the tool allows job seekers to practice as much as they want without bothering others. This can reduce anxiety.
That said, experts also recommend candidates practice in front of others. According to them, at this point, only a human can analyze a person’s presentation skills, cues, and ability to improvise based on in-person interactions. Technology also lacks the level of connection humans can provide. Further, tools cannot generate follow-up questions based on a candidate’s response.
â€œAt some point, you will need to prepare with an actual human. The person’s feedback is subjective, but that subjectivity may be an advantage to the job seeker. Until then, using whatever tools and techniques you can to build your interviewing skills to be able to interview in person is important,â€ Kleiman said.
What This Could Mean to the Future of Interviews
Industry players believe that the tool heralds the beginning of AI tools in interview prep. Russell also believes it is a glimpse into the future where robot recruiters will conduct application screenings. He says, â€œA robot will call you, ask some basic questions and provide some feedback. It will then make the decision to move you into the hiring funnel.â€Â
That said, LinkedIn had already added an AI-based instant feedback featureOpens a new window to its interview preparation tool in 2020. The feature would provide feedback on pacing, the frequency of filler words, and a few phrases to avoid. It further makes it possible to request feedback on the responses from the job seeker’s connections.
Hence, as we go forward, we may see more AI interview preparation tools with advanced features being released into the market.Â
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