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This week’s TallSky topics for you:

  1. Remote Interview Tips for Employers
  2. Bullying, Harassment and Discrimination – A timely reminder
  3. CERB, Temporary Layoff and a Return to work

Remote Interview Tips for Employers

While we all yearn to meet with people in the same room, we must also remember the ongoing requirement to maintain physical distancing.  As a result, we are all looking to find innovative ways to remain healthy, stay connected, and be productive at our jobs.  Our new virtual office environments continue to be the go-to format for many businesses, at least for the time being. 

Last week, TallSky’s Tips provided some ideas on video interviewing from the candidate’s perspective.  See Video Interview Tips for Employees This week, we turn the tables and provide you with tips from the employer’s perspective. 

More than ever, filling much-needed positions is a two-way street.  Candidates are as interested in the culture and values of the organization as they are the work they will be doing in their next opportunity.  Employers who know this are working hard to make the interview process inviting, comfortable, safe, and above all, attractive to talented candidates.

Here are a few tips for you, the employer, to help you outperform the competition for the best candidate when you conduct your virtual or remote interviews:

  1. Inform your candidates about the interview. Ensure they have all of the pertinent details of their interview (including the date, time and approximate length of the interview) at least 3-4 days ahead of their interview – this shows them you are well-organized and care about their time and schedules too;
  2. Arrange the necessary technology that will be used and give it a test run before the interview – connecting with the candidate too so they are comfortable with the technology and the connection (and have a back-up plan in case the technology doesn’t work);
  3. Put your candidates’ mind at ease by providing them with details about the interview:
    • The names and titles of the interviewers;
    • Whether or not any of the questions will be provided ahead of time; and
    • Share last week’s tips on how candidates can be successful in a video interview;
  4. Provide candidates with the job description and any other pertinent information about your organization;
  5. Make sure you have a copy of their resume for each interviewer or the panel, along with interview questions you may wish to use as a guide;
  6. Offer to be available by phone or email if they have any questions ahead of their interview;
  7. If more than one interviewer is participating, determine who will ask questions and who will be asked to take notes. By establishing the process on how the interview will be conducted you will be more organized, efficient and provide a good impression to the candidate;
  8. Select a quiet, well-lit and tidy office, boardroom or other environment for your interviews;
  9. Decide ahead of time if you would like to ask for candidates’ references before, during or following their interview – remember that quality candidates are often interviewing for more than one position, so time is of the essence;
  10. Because candidates are evaluating you as much as you are evaluating them, prepare a compelling summary about your organization – next six months’ priorities, recent successes, work environment and culture, perks, and other aspects that will ‘paint a picture’ of what working in your organization is like on a daily or weekly basis;
  11. Dress for success – ensure all of the interviewers are dressed professionally to represent your company well;
  12. Let the candidates know next steps and timelines so they can plan; and
  13. Follow up after the interview to thank the candidates for attending and for their time and effort in preparing for their interview. Depending on the outcome of their interview, this may also be the time when you want to ask for their references.

For more information on conducting successful remote interviews, here are a couple of helpful links:

Bullying, Harassment & Discrimination – A timely reminder (REPEAT FROM LAST WEEK)

Over the past few weeks, events have driven home the need for us all to understand each other, treat each other with respect, fairness, kindness, civility and honesty, and to communicate in a genuine, honourable and equitable manner.  As employers, you are required to have a Bullying, Harassment & Discrimination Policy for your organization that clearly defines what these behaviours are and the escalation process to resolve issues in your workplace.  You must be able to demonstrate that this has been communicated and all employees have been trained in this area.  Ideally, you will ensure there is a signed acknowledgement on every employee’s file to confirm their understanding of your policy.  Attached is a Human Rights in BC Fact Sheet for more information. Please let us know if you require any assistance in preparing or updating your Bullying, Harassment and Discrimination guidelines, as it is more critical than ever in reducing risks and maintaining a strong team culture.

CERB, Temporary Layoff and a Return to Work

Currently, there are discussions at the federal level of government about whether to extend the CERB benefits which are due to run out for many individuals early next month at the end of their 16 weeks of benefits. We do not know at this point what may be decided. Additionally, for BC, what is the implication for the temporary layoff period? It has already been extended from 13 weeks to the current 16 weeks to match CERB. Will the provincial government make a move to prevent the termination of many laid-off employees following their 16-week term without recall to work? 

These questions, as well as your ability to re-employ workers will require thoughtful planning and discussion in order to ensure you make the right decisions for your business and team. The sooner employees know whether they are returning to work, what the conditions will be and how many hours they can expect, the easier the potential transition will be for you, as the employer and for your employees.  If you remain uncertain about your ability to recall laid-off employees, consider making the decision to release them, giving them the opportunity to find work sooner during Phase II. If you are making this decision, be sure to understand the implications of your employee employment contracts, terminations under BC Employment Standards and potential common law considerations. It remains difficult to predict what the environmental and economic conditions will be over the next few months.  By partnering with your HR professional, legal counsel and keeping your employees advised of the challenges, you can avoid causing unnecessary hardship, minimize financial and business risks and potentially earn some goodwill of employees, your business and clients.


Our team at TallSky Consulting continues to support our clients, new and valued. If there is anything we can do to assist you in ensuring your Harassment, Bullying and Discrimination policies are strong, help you recruit truly talented candidates, or support your decision making through this challenging period, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We continue to offer our expertise as and when you need it, and from our virtual offices to yours. 

DISCLAIMER The information is provided as general information on these topics, and given the rapidly evolving environment, they may not be relevant with recent updates or changes on the topic. These materials are not meant to be a substitute for specific legal advice. Please do not rely solely upon this information for making decisions regarding employees in your workplace.