Insights & Resources

Recruiting in a Virtual World

Q&A with Lori Carpenter of Carpenter Legal Search, Inc.

With the impact of COVID-19 and the transition to remote working for many industries, how is recruiting for your clients different? What remains the same?

Albeit there have been more interviews from start to finish for a completely virtual search, it has been a much more "personal" experience for both our clients and candidates. Instead of conducting interviews in a conference room, often with multiple interviewers, people are connecting one-on-one virtually from individual personal spaces. It is a good opportunity for both our clients and candidates to go deeper during interviews, not only on a professional level but also on a personal level, showing more of their personalities and interests in a more tangible way than typically happens in an office setting. That is a very positive step for both parties to learn if the position is a good fit and if the organization is a good cultural fit as well.

Having virtual technology also makes the search process more personal for Carpenter Legal Search. We recruit nationally, and with recent cuts in travel expenditures, we would not have been able to make as many face-to-face connections with our clients or candidates. Our search process remains the same, and we are providing the same service; however, in many instances, the personal connection has been enhanced. 

With people working from home, the availability of candidates to interview is greater as they have more flexibility to schedule personal time throughout the day. Virtual interviews are now more acceptable from a client perspective as well, whereas before the pandemic, interviewing in person at the client site was almost always required, particularly during the latter half of the search process. Additionally, candidates do not need to take a day or two off of work to interview as would have been necessary if they were traveling to interview at a client site. Unlike trying to schedule all interviews for a candidate during one day in a conference room, virtual interviews can be staggered so that it works for everyone's schedule, and it makes it possible for a candidate to interview with a client's global workforce in multiple locations. 

How has Carpenter Legal Search adjusted to better serve their clients and candidates virtually?

Since our business was already in the cloud and we had the capability to conduct virtual interviews, we only needed to start utilizing that technology on a larger scale.  Instead of just capitalizing on our virtual capabilities for those clients and candidates outside of our region, we now utilize it for those within our region as well. Even with quarantine measures, we have the opportunity to "meet" every candidate in person.

We also have been able to assist clients and candidates who are not used to virtual technology, facilitating interviews and offering insight. We give our candidates the opportunity to test the technology and are able to provide feedback to both parties on the virtual experience.

As we adjust to remote working along with the rest of the world, we are paying close attention to how we are operating and with whom we are working. We are remaining flexible and responsive to our clients' needs as they evolve to meet their expectations and to continue to provide uncompromising personalized service.

What is one of the most positive things about conducting a completely virtual search?

Although interview scheduling is dependent on a client's time frame and a candidate's availability, the timespan for interviews is reduced because travel does not need to be arranged and all parties have greater flexibility. Time zone differences can be managed more easily, and a candidate has the opportunity to meet with more people in more client locations in a shorter span of time.

Read More: Recruiting in a Virtual World: Q&A with Lori Carpenter of Carpenter Legal Search, Inc. -

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