The New Employer Landscape: Pre-Screening Tools

As we’ve transitioned into this virtual space, employers have increased their use of pre-screening tools, like Hirevue and Pymetrics, to get through their large application pools.

These platforms have allowed employers to essentially replace some of the “in-person” interviewing steps they’ve depended on to narrow down their candidate selections.

This means that even without in-person interviews and recruiting events, employers can still utilize these pre-screening tools to get a sense of what the applicant is like as a candidate. The tools allow employers to better understand candidates before they actually meet, whether it’s via phone or virtual interview.

  • Pro-Tip: If you’re applying for multiple roles, we encourage you to organize your search with a tracker or document. This will help you to keep everything in one place and be easy to refer back to in future interview rounds. 

Let’s start with the basics

Who uses them? The tools are used by employers within all different career industries, but they are most commonly used for entry-level and/or internship roles in the Finance, Consulting, or Technology sectors. 

Which platforms are in play? Although each employer is entitled to use the platform/tool of their choice, many platforms have similar functionalities and end goals.

Now, Let’s Use Pre-screening tools to your advantage

Interestingly enough, these tools can actually be used to your advantage as an applicant. Read on for an overview of some of the platforms you’re most likely to encounter during your virtual interviewing experience. 


HireVue is one of the most popular pre-screening platforms. It has been used globally by companies across industries. Typically, HireVue is used for video interviewing and interview assessments.

The video interviewing feature is very accessible.

Candidates can choose to simply download the app on their mobile phones and complete a pre-set interview. This interview is prompted and feels as though you’re being asked the questions “in-person.” 

Candidates all receive the question and then they receive a specific time limit to answer each question and you’re unable to change your answer. Often you are given a practice round before you complete the real one. Also, candidates are given an adequate amount of time before it’s required to be completed. 

The interview assessments feature is designed to allow employers to choose candidates based on data-driven information, trusted insights, and minimize the employer selection bias.

The employer has the ability to choose, which assessment they prefer whether its game-based or coding. 

So what do people think?

Candidates have expressed that Hirevue is easy to use and applauded it’s modernized take on interviewing and assessing candidates. 


Pymetrics is another pre-screening platform/tool utilized by employers.

Employers within Communications & Media, Finance, Consulting, and many other industries have tapped into the services provided by this platform.

Unlike HireVue, Pymetrics only used for interviewing assessments. The company has leveraged data science and technology to help employers look beyond the resume and actual interview to select candidates. 

Let’s Make Assessment, Fun?

Pymetrics has game-based assessments that allow the employer to better understand a candidate’s behavioral attributes. In the form of assessment they’ve created, there is simply no right or wrong answers and no preparation needed before you complete the game. 

How do I win?

We encourage students to open Pymetrics and think of it less as an interview and more as a game.

It’s imperative all candidates pay attention to the rules and information provided throughout the “game-based assessment,” but there is no specific way to play it.

The games are generally for about 30 minutes in total and you’re unable to pause once you’ve begun. The assessment incorporates multiple types of games, which all last about 1-3 minutes. 

Since this assessment is all behavioral, there really is no wrong way to do it. 

Other Platforms & Tools

HackerRank is a platform used by employers to evaluate software developers based on their skills. This platform is mainly used in Technology & Engineering sectors. The application pool for software developer roles and ones similar to it can be quite large especially for well-known Internet & Software companies. Industry-specific platforms like HackerRank are commonly used to narrow down candidates. Each employer customizes the assessments based on what they are looking for. Bonus: It also allows candidates to learn and practice coding.

Applied is another platform utilized by employers such as Conde Nast and The Penguin Random House. They are known as the “blind recruitment platform” that helps employers interview and assess candidates by removing any chance of bias. Unlike the other platforms, this one may be more employer facing rather than directly utilized by the candidate. Employers essentially create their jobs within the platform using the tools’ advice around specific questions they can ask during interviews, and skill requirements. Also, employers are able to assess the candidate’s answers to questions by using a “sift process” to remove bias and use behavioral science research. Platforms like Applied are based in the United Kingdom and utilized by global companies. 

ESkill has been rated as one of the best in providing employers with a platform to give online tests and assessments to improve the candidate selection process. This platform is mainly used in the Healthcare, Legal, IT, and Retail industries with companies such as PepsiCo, Pandora, LG, Coca Cola, and more. Each type of industry has a different focus area for testing and assessments. All of the assessments are modular, subject-based, job-based and they host a video interviewing option as well. Employers have the opportunity to customize their tests and assessments based on their roles and career industries. 

A Message from CCE

We understand that the number of platforms/tools being utilized by employers can feel overwhelming. Yet, we want to ensure you that these pre-screening tools are meant to remove the unconscious bias created through the interviewing process of finding the right candidate “fit.” 

Additionally, there are still a lot of things that are under your control during a virtual interviewing process.

Set yourself up for success by researching the specific platforms that you may encounter before you are required to submit assessments to employers. 

Practice makes perfect!

An excellent way to get practice with video interviews (both live and prerecorded) is through the tool Big Interview. You can record your answers, time them, and self-evaluate or send off to a trusted mentor, colleague, or CCE career counselor to gain additional feedback.

For more support with interview preparation, review CCE’s Interview Tipsheets and specifically the guide on How to Prepare for Virtual and Phone Interviews.

We’re always here to help

Schedule an appointment with a career counselor or stop by Virtual Quick Questions