By Susan Murad
With National Disability Employment Awareness Month just concluded, the Center on Employment at Rochester Institute of Technology’s National Technical Institute for the Deaf is offering tips for employers conducting virtual interviews with deaf and hard-of-hearing job candidates.
“In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, we recognize that the usual approach to the interview process has been dramatically impacted, and many employers are turning to virtual platforms to conduct their interviews,” said John Macko, director of RIT/NTID’s Center on Employment.
Employers can ensure that deaf and hard-of-hearing job candidates have full access to communication for a successful interview. Here’s how:
- Avoid having bright lights or a window directly behind you that can create glare and cause eye strain for the candidate. Make sure there are no distractions in the background, as well.
- If the candidate is not familiar with the platform (Zoom, Google Meet, etc.) used for the interview, allow them to perform a test connection to make sure the candidate can connect at the time of the interview.
- Encourage the candidate to let you know if communication is unclear. Ask questions and clarify comments to ensure the candidate understands everything that is happening during the interview.
- Use a dry erase board, writing tablet, chatroom, or comment feature to help clarify your communication.