Watching the film Avatar reminded me of a New York Times article I read least year. The editor reported about several companies including HP, Microsoft, Verizon Communications, Bain & Company who started doing job interviews in virtual worlds such as Second Life.
Hmmmm – advantages would definitely include time and travel cost savings AND job applicants wouldn’t have to fear bad hair days any longer. But can you really form an opinion about a potential future employee by talking to his/her avatar?
Most companies agree virtual interviews can’t replace face-to-face meetings but can only be one step of an interview process replacing procedures such as phone or e-mail interviews. In future they could also be complemented by video interviews.
At GlobalCom we welcome job applications in any form – including avatars – but we definitely insist in meeting applicants in person.
Wibke Sonderkamp (simpsonized avatar)