Text Message Interview Tips for Job Seekers



Texting is Transforming the Interview Process

The whole purpose of interviewing by text is so that recruiters can filter out candidates without having to spend countless hours on the telephone or zoom trying to hire you.

The speed of texting allows them to do more in a shorter period of time so you should probably expect some questions via text if you are in job hunting mode. As you probably already know, the response rate for texting blows away any other form of communication. If you want to get hired faster, pray that the company you are applying to uses texting in some form.

Key Benefits of Text Interviews

A recruiter’s cell phone has become an integral part of their daily toolbox. But texting can also occur in a web based environment using online software like Emissary. Our dashboard lets recruiters sends and store all text communications using a phone number.

  • Text Interviews Help Speed of Hire – because most job seekers have their phones nearby, recruiters can quickly use texting to schedule their meetings beyond normal business hours. Getting a text from a recruiter at 7 or 8pm will only grow over time. Text message interviews also offers privacy. There’s no chance being overheard like on a phone screen.

  • Stress Reducing Concept – Typical face to face interviewing can cause a great deal of stress among job applicants. Texting eliminates the pressure of having to rush to an interview. This leaves the job seeker free from these burdens and lets them answer questions in a relaxed atmosphere, wherever they may be.

  • Reduced Interview Bias – a text message interview has the ability to reduce or minimize bias in the hiring process. There’s no voice, body language or other visual cues for the interviewer to pick up on. This redacted form of communication is the perfect way to avoid bias.

  • Permanent and Searchable – a text interview can be stored and searched through by recruiters and hiring managers making it a good permanent storage tool for what was said. Answers can be reviewed at the click of a button. This could also help minimize potential legal issues down the road.

Text Interview Examples

There are several variations for how a text message interview can take place. From Asynchronous to synchronous, lets take a look at how they happen.

  • Live Text Interviews – a live or synchronous interview is one which most hiring managers would most likely choose. It happens just like a phone interview by scheduling a block of time between both parties.

  • Questionnaire – you can run a text interview in a questionnaire type format by aggregating multiple questions at once to be sent to the job seeker. They would then answer them one by one. This method actually ensures the same questions are sent to every candidate for each role.

  • Asynchronous – in this format each interview question is answered whenever the respondent can answer back. So it may take a number of hours if the seeker is only answering on breaks or in between tasks as they go about their day. The hiring manager also sends questions at their discretion so from a time saving standpoint this is a great option.

  • Voice to text – modern smartphones also allow people to record a voice message and sent it via text. Imagine if you could send questions via text and get back audio replies. It’s essentially the same as a phone interview.


Hiring managers and interviews often come across as inconsistent so taking a text interview approach may prove to help become better at interviewing candidates and creating a more consistent candidate experience. Interview by text is poised to become the new “phone screen” for forward thinking employers who leverage this ubiquitous messaging channel.

The advantages are obvious. Namely a better quality applicant, less bias and a speedier hiring process. Whether you are a job seeker, recruiter or hiring manager, texting is here to stay. Though not yet mainstream as far as interviewing goes, those days are surely ahead and companies like Emissary are poised to power that job search experience.

About Chris Russell

Chris Russell has spent 20 years in the online recruiting space building job boards, recruiting apps and publishing a variety of content for the recruiting industry through articles, podcasting and webinars. Also a former talent practitioner, he’s a popular voice helping to inform the modern recruiter.
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