21.07.2021 10:10

Video Interviews: the legal situation in the employment application process

The use of recorded video interviews in the employment application process has recently become a trend in many companies. The reason is easy to grasp. For the applicants, the video interview or its recording obviously also has its added value.  

However, Skype interviews, video interviews or the recording of a video interview cannot be used as a mandatory requirement in the application process, but only as an option, in accordance with data protection and standards. Exactly these two aspects we have put under the spotlight.

Data protection

In Germany the federal states decide on data protection law. There are so far available only the decisions of two data protection authorities from 17 - NRW and Berlin. The NRW decision with the interpretation of the question on applicant preselection by Video Interview (§ 9.1.2) can be accessed via the following link.

Although both authorities have prohibited video interviews, the question is not so clear-cut: Since this method is based on a structured procedure (DIN 33430 and DIN Spec) and is carried out for aptitude diagnostic reasons, video interviews achieve a high prognostic validity with regard to the aptitude of an applicant. 

Dr. Philipp Byers gives a factual explanation of the data protection aspects of video interviews in the linked article.

His conclusion is: In NRW and Berlin, Skype interviews and video interviews or the recording of a video interview can only be used in the employment application process with the candidate's willing consent according to §26 para. 2 of the Federal Data Act.


Video interviews and their recordings are subject to DIN Spec 91426  "Quality requirements for video-based methods of recruitment ". The DIN standards are aimed both at the developers and distributors of tools for video interviews and at all companies that use or would like to use video-supported methods in the employment application process.

DIN Spec 91426 is intended to contribute to a transparent and reliable guarantee of digital recruitment procedures in the case of video recruiting, as well as to protect against discrimination in recruitment and to highlight individual issues regarding the topic of artificial intelligence in the employment application process. Read more about this here.

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