Enhancing Education Recruitment: Using Digital Interviews for Reference Checks

Drew Whitehurst | May 17, 2024

In a recent webinar hosted by ApplyToEducation and interviewstream, Monique Mahler, CEO of interviewstream, and Mark Laurie, President of ApplyToEducation, unveiled a new feature set aimed at further easing the hiring process for Canadian school boards: digital reference checks with video interviews.


The Importance of HR Technology in K-12 Recruitment

ApplyToEducation and interviewstream launched a partnership integration in 2023 with the aim of assisting Canadian K-12 School Boards in overcoming hiring challenges present in many regions of Canada.

The teacher shortage in Canada can be attributed to many factors, however, two main challenges stand out: 1) increasing rates of teachers leaving the profession and 2) a decline in the number of students entering education and teaching programs.

As more teachers retire and fewer individuals opt for teaching careers, the demand for replacements escalates. Regional disparities, such as housing shortages, location, and cost of living concerns, make this challenge more difficult, impacting the availability of teachers for open positions within school boards.

ApplyToEducation and interviewstream’s partnership and integration aims to expedite the teacher screening interview process through one-way video interviews, reducing time-to-hire. The technology enables K-12 school boards to enhance efficiencies in the hiring process, facilitating quicker offers to teachers and staff. This very modern HR tech plays a crucial role in:

  • Broadening the candidate pool
  • Creating a comprehensive candidate database for consistent active and passive recruiting
  • Efficiently matching candidates to job openings
  • Ensuring compliance and data security

The initial integration of interviewstream with ApplyToEducation was met with enthusiastic feedback from clients. They saw the potential for video interviewing not just in the initial stages, but throughout the hiring process. A particular pain point – confidential reference checks – aligned perfectly with a new feature ApplyToEducation was developing. Recognizing a golden opportunity, the two teams began working on a new integration feature, looking to deliver a solution that streamlines both video interviews and digital reference checks.


Challenges in Traditional Confidential Reference Checks

contacting and validating candidate references, typically over the phone in real time. This process presents several challenges:

  • Availability: It can be challenging to get in touch with candidate references.
  • Limited Feedback: References might not give much detail, making it hard to understand if the candidate is right for the job.
  • Biased or Wrong Info: References might temper their feedback live because they like the candidate or don’t want to be negative.
  • Time & Resources: Checking references can be a long process, especially when dealing with lots of candidates or references.
  • Expensive: Many school boards pay retired employees to do reference checks.
Infographic on reference check pain points: availability, feedback, bias, time, cost.


Solving the Challenge: Helping Canadian School Boards Use Modern Tools for Confidential Reference Checks

Enter digital reference checks, using on demand interviews to conduct and review confidential reference check interviews. Set to launch in Q3 2024, ApplyToEducation and interviewstream’s new feature promises to further upgrade the hiring process for Canadian K-12 school boards.

Mark Laurie highlighted the evolution of reference checking during the webinar, emphasizing the benefits of modern tools like one-way interviews. This approach enables recruiters to gather feedback from references at any time and place, facilitating better and faster hiring decisions. By utilizing one-way interview technology for reference checks, school boards can expedite hiring while saving time and resources:

  • Check References Anywhere at Anytime: Use one-way digital interviews to gather feedback from references anywhere, at any time.
  • Better Understanding: Get more detailed feedback from references, helping you make smarter hiring choices.
  • Time and Money Saved: One way reference checks speed up the reference check process and eliminate unnecessary expenses.
Infographic on digital reference check benefits: flexibility, understanding, time & money savings.


Streamline Your Confidential Reference Checks with ApplyToEducation Integration to interviewstream

Using one-way interviews for reference checks eliminates the time-consuming and resource-intensive traditional process. How it works:

  • Using the confidential reference checks area within a candidate record in ApplyToEducation, add or select a reference.
  • Next, choose a previously created one-way reference check interview.
  • The system will automatically send the interview to the submitted references, allowing them to complete the reference check questions (available in video, text, and multiple choice options) on their own time.
  • The confidential reference check responses are then made available within the candidate record in ApplyToEducation for review at any time.


Our Joint Commitment to Empowering Canadian K-12 School Boards

ApplyToEducation and interviewstream are committed to addressing the needs of Canadian school boards; empowering school districts with the best in HR technology, aiming to expedite hiring processes, enhance compliance, and position school districts as premier destinations for educators. We are also committed to improving your experiences through the feedback you provide to us—as shown by this quick evolution of the partnership.

The introduction of digital reference checks is a significant advancement in modernizing the hiring process for Canadian school boards. With HR technology at their disposal, recruiters can efficiently hire top talent while ensuring compliance and delivering an exceptional candidate experience.

Stay tuned for more updates as ApplyToEducation and interviewstream continue to innovate hiring and empower school boards across Canada.

If you’re interested in learning more about the ApplyToEducation and interviewstream integration, schedule a quick demo with our team here, or watch the full webinar here.

About The Author

Drew Whitehurst is the Director of Marketing at interviewstream. He's been with the company since 2014 working in client services and marketing. He is an analytical thinker, coffee enthusiast, and hobbyist at heart.


interviewstream is dedicated to the success of more than 900 clients from K-12 school districts, emerging businesses, midsize companies, large enterprises, colleges, and universities.

SOC TYPE 2 Cetification Badge


877-773-3164 (USA Only)


© 2024 interviewstream | all rights reserved XML Sitemap