BDO Ireland

BDO is the leader in advising and funding ambitious Irish businesses, helping them to grow in domestic and international markets. With offices in Dublin, Limerick, Cork and an affiliate office in Belfast, BDO employs 625 partners and staff on the island of Ireland.


When their recruitment activity increased by 14% in 2017, BDO recognised that their process would have to be optimised if such growth was to continue. Following a critical review encompassing their Existing Process; Labour Market trends and activity; Employer Brand and Digital innovations on the market, Video interviewing was recommended as a way to streamline the process

We have introduced Video Interviewing for all vacancies in the Irish firm. Overall it has provided better alignment with HR and the business. We selected Sonru over a number of vendors because they had a proven digital platform with Plug and Play Technology. Being able to brand our account to reflect our messaging and EVP and its integration with the Taleo ATS were also factors in our decision.” – Ann Hogan, HR Director, BDO Ireland

Key Findings

  • 80% Cost Savings
  • International Recruitment
  • Team Buy-In
  • Candidate Satisfaction

Some of the Highlights

Ann maintains their “process was very standard” in which successful applicants were invited to 1st round interviews with HR and the line managers followed by a second interview. 

Asynchronous Video Interviews have replaced the 1st round interview. Video Interviewing has resulted in faster collating of data for selecting candidates for the next stage of the recruitment process as well as reducing the chargeable time spent on 1st round screening by 80%.

“A very conservative estimate of fees lost by line managers conducting first round interviews would be €38,000. Video Interviewing has reduced the chargeable time spent on 1st round screening [178 chargeable hours] by 80%.” – Ann Hogan

Video interviews have resulted in smarter recruitment for BDO.

According to Ann: ‘Sometimes, when assessing a video interview, a candidate may appear to be more suitable for a different department so I’ll ask them if they’d mind being put forward for another role. I’ve had good conversion rates there and I might fill 2 or 3 roles with the one requisition.“

“Overall you get a better ‘sense’ of the person. Video Interviewing provides an opportunity to experience the candidate’s personality and see their body language. As a result, the candidates that are being shortlisted for the face-2-face interviews are of higher calibre than before.” – Ann Hogan

With the changes in the labour market over the past decade, BDO found it increasingly challenging to fill audit roles as the candidates were not living in Ireland. With over 95% of applications from overseas candidates, Skype was used to conduct the preliminary interviews but poor quality lines / drop-offs combined with its inherent limitations, with respect to scheduling and the number of interviewers, made it cumbersome.

“Asynchronous video interviewing has made overseas recruitment quicker, easier and more accessible for all parties involved. The team can watch together here or on their phones or at home. We’re seeing a greater diversity of candidates given such easy access from any location and outside of standard working hours.” – Ann Hogan

The response from BDO’s line managers has been very positive with the notes/comments and rating functionality proving particularly popular. Overall, Asynchronous Video Interviewing was found to be “much more convenient” in how it has eliminated the time spent scheduling interviews and reduced the time spent on 1st round interviews by 80%.

“The feedback from the team has been fantastic. Since introducing Asynchronous Video Interviewing, our Line Managers feel that the recruitment system is better aligned to their needs.” – Ann Hogan

The following is derived from the findings from over 105 respondents who volunteered to complete a survey made available to all BDO Ireland candidates.

  • 100% satisfaction with the candidate experience
  • 100% found the software easy to use
  • 94% would complete a video interview again
  • 50% of respondents were aware of video interviews beforehand and 28% had completed a video interview in the past
  • 85% had positive feelings when they received the invitation, with a further 14% neutral
  • Choosing the time and overall convenience emerged as the most popular benefits of video interviewing
  • 45% completed the video interview in their native language

Device used to complete interview:

  • 78% computer
  • 16% iOS App
  • 6% Android App

Location of interview:

  • 93% home
  • 5% public facility
  • 2% work

“I loved the idea of having the interview at a time that suits the candidate. User friendly. Overall I had a positive experience.”

“I really enjoyed using the platform. It is easy and intuitive to use, not intimidating.”

“I thought it was an excellent idea and very progressive. It saves time and is less stressful for the candidate.”

“It was very easy to use. I am out of the country in Germany and found it very easy to use my phone to connect.”

“Very easy to use. Unlimited practice interviews is a great feature.”

“An interesting way to get through interviews as it gives the interviewee limited time to answer so it cuts out rambling.”

“It is a great platform for the interviewers as well as interviewees.”

“I found it very good – well- explained, good pre-interview practice available and the interview itself was seamless.”

– BDO Candidates


We actively sought out and implemented an innovative digital product that would make the process better. Our recruitment activity is forecast to continue increasing in 2019. Video Interviewing will prove to be a valuable digital tool to increase our process efficiency, save time and costs for the business and to improve our candidate experience.”

Ann Hogan, HR Director, BDO Ireland