America Employed

  • Employers Prefer In-Person Interviews, but 40% Fold In Virtual Components

    OKLAHOMA CITY - July 26, 2023

    Note: If you would like to arrange for an interview with a local Express franchise owner on this topic, please go to to find the nearest location.

    • Interview Methods Appear Industry Specific
    • Latest Results from The Harris Poll

    Job seekers should prepare to meet with potential employers at least once during the hiring process, as 51% of U.S. hiring managers say they prefer to interview candidates face-to-face instead of through a screen or phone.

    However, the lasting effects of the COVID-19 pandemic are still evident as 8% of hiring managers only conduct interviews virtually, while another 40% use a combination of in-person and virtual.

    This is according to a recent survey from The Harris Poll commissioned by Express Employment Professionals.


    If an applicant shows up at a business unannounced to secure employment, a majority of employers describe the tactic positively, saying it shows motivation (57%), initiative (46%) and that the candidate is driven (40%).

    Only 35% view this behavior as negative with descriptions such as obsessive (19%), creepy (16%) or out-of-date (14%).

    The Return of In-Person Interviews

    While the methods for conducting job interviews depend on multiple factors, including industry and skill level of the candidate, the value of in-person interaction can also set candidates up for success.

    “We continue to use virtual interviews mostly for professional and administrative roles,” said Jorge Costas, Express franchise owner in Florida. “For our light industrial candidates, in-person interactions are more successful.”

    In Washington, Express General Manager Stacey Snodgrass’s office also requires in-person interviews for certain positions.

    "While we were engaging in phone and virtual interviews for most positions, we noticed an uptick in our number of no-shows when it came to the second, in-person part of the interview to complete onboarding forms," she said. "Wasting valuable time on no-shows hurts both the company and potential applicants who may be a strong fit."

    Virtual interviews do have advantages, such as time efficiency, but both Snodgrass and Costas say these types of interactions don’t provide a full picture of the candidate.

    “In-person interviews are the best, in my opinion, to get to know the applicant; to see and connect with them to determine the best professional fit for them and a potential employer,” Snodgrass said.

    If a job seeker followed up on an application in person, Costas said he would try to interview them immediately if his schedule allows or encourage them to schedule an appointment at a later date.

    “I do find that a person who has the confidence to show up and ask to be interviewed has an interest in working, and that initiative should not be discounted,” he added.

    Outside of showing up at the company to increase hiring chances, Snodgrass suggests job seekers follow up after an interview with references, send a thank-you note to the hiring manager and check back in a week if you haven’t heard any updates.

    “Technology was such a wonderful asset to keep the workforce connected during the COVID-19 pandemic but returning to in-person interviews or a virtual component at the start of the hiring process allows employers to assess soft skills that are hard to capture without meeting face-to-face,” said Express Employment International CEO Bill Stoller. “Looking at these survey results, it seems companies agree.”

    Survey Methodology

    The Job Insights survey was conducted online within the United States by The Harris Poll on behalf of Express Employment Professionals between June 13 and June 26, 2023, among 1,010 U.S. hiring decision-makers (defined as adults ages 18+ in the U.S. who are employed full-time or self-employed, work at companies with more than one employee, and have full/significant involvement in hiring decisions at their company). Data were weighted where necessary by company size to bring them into line with their actual proportions in the population. Respondents for this survey were selected from among those who have agreed to participate in our surveys. The sampling precision of Harris online polls is measured by using a Bayesian credible interval. For this study, the sample data is accurate to within + 3.2 percentage points using a 95% confidence level. This credible interval will be wider among subsets of the surveyed population of interest.


    If you would like to arrange for an interview with Bill Stoller to discuss this topic, please contact Sheena Hollander, Director of Corporate Communications and PR, at (405) 717-5966.

    About Bill Stoller

    William H. "Bill" Stoller is chairman and chief executive officer of Express Employment International. Founded in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, the international staffing franchisor supports the Express Employment Professionals franchise and related brands. The Express franchise brand is an industry-leading, international staffing company with franchise locations in the U.S., Canada, South Africa, Australia, and New Zealand.

    About Express Employment Professionals

    At Express Employment Professionals, we’re in the business of people. From job seekers to client companies, Express helps people thrive and businesses grow. Our international network of franchises offers localized staffing solutions to the communities they serve across the U.S., Canada, South Africa, Australia, and New Zealand, employing 579,000 people globally in 2022 and more than 10 million since its inception. For more information, visit