Excuse the Pollyanna approach, but something good has come out of the massive work disruption caused by the pandemic. Remote work has necessitated a rethinking of how we communicate and who must approve those communications. That is good news for Talent Acquisition leaders. It is long overdue and a battle that Talent Acquisition leaders were reluctant to wage.
Legal departments across the country have always had an irrational fear of video, and the fear seems rooted in product liability claims. In the Mad Men era when TV became an advertising medium, legal departments needed to keep the marketing team in check. Before a commercial aired, the legal department reviewed copy and final video of every commercial and had the authority to stop the distribution of any of them and for good reason – they were expensive to produce and could create incredible liability issues if the marketing team decided to push the envelope on product claims.
Flash forward to 2020: corporate videos are being produced and shared on a daily basis. Facebook, Instagram, TicTok, LinkedIn, TV – every channel has morphed into a marketing opportunity and video is the only way to get peoples’ attention. Yet some legal departments still want to review and approve every video, and in some organizations, it is even worse – videos must be approved by marketing, corporate communications, compliance and senior executives!
Can you imagine if every email went through the same process?
If emails were subjected to the same review process as videos, companies would grind to a halt. The sheer volume of emails and the essential need to communicate, both internally and externally, means that managers are trusted to craft and distribute their emails without oversight.
Why isn’t that true of videos?
Videos are no more, or less, subjected to litigation. Both document information in a format that is discoverable during a lawsuit. Both emails and video are “permanent records” that contain company information.
Video is just another way to communicate. And because of COVID and the lack of personal interaction in the recruiting process – video is an essential way to communicate. Putting a human face and a voice into the process from talent attraction through onboarding has become critical to engaging candidates. The explosion in video conferences confirms our need to have face-to-face interactions with people. It is not possible to have video conferences with every candidate, so video becomes the scalable way to retain the human connection.
And since video is just another means of communication, what is the argument that says talent acquisition is not capable of producing video without legal checking up on them?
In many organizations, the inability to answer that question convincingly is leading to long overdue change. TA teams are recording videos to introduce recruiters to potential candidates, to showcase managers describing opportunities on their teams, to introduce team members to candidates interviewing remotely, to extend a welcome that accompanies an offer letter and to preview the work environment that will eventually be part of the new hire’s experience. These videos are being created by the hundreds and legal has become an unmanageable stumbling block.
If you work in an organization where the legal department insists on reviewing your videos, ask why? Ask why they are not reviewing your emails, your social media posts, your texts and monitoring your phone calls. Video is essential for effective communication and unnecessary roadblocks inhibit your ability to do your job. With so many work processes under review, video approval must be moved to the top of the list and recognized as an outdated practice from another era. Talent Acquisition must be allowed to do its job.
Insist on control of your communication tools and attract the best talent to your organization by humanizing your recruiting process. Video is the most powerful tool you have.
Maury Hanigan is CEO of Sparcstart, a video platform that embeds hiring manager video into job descriptions and provides the video management system for leading TA Departments. Learn more at www.SparcStart.com.