We Like Your Look

Designed by the recruiting-technology firm HireVue, the system uses candidates’ computer or cellphone cameras to analyze their facial movements, word choice and speaking voice before ranking them against other applicants based on an automatically generated “employability” score.

Drew Harwell, Washington Post

Yeah, I have questions. So many questions.

Loren Larsen, HireVue’s chief technology officer, responds to criticism of this technology in the article, but his responses leave me feeling even less confident about his company’s offering than I was when I started reading the article.

Read Face-Scanning Algorithm Increasingly Decides Whether You Deserve the Job in The Press Herald.


  1. Nathan Mondragon

    Hi Ben,
    Happy to chat about our technology and assessment solutions.
    Nathan Mondragon, Ph.D.
    Chief IO Psychologist

  2. Ben Butina, Ph.D.

    Dr. Mondragon: Very cool of you to reach out. As you can imagine, this technology is getting a lot of heat in the IO world. Would you be willing to come on the podcast to discuss?

  3. @Dr Nathan Mondragon,
    What is the outcome variable that the algorithm is predicting? In other words, what does “employability” (as it is labelled in the linked article) getting at? Is it intended to mean predicted work performance or something else? Even if it is predicted work performance, what does that mean? Is work performance here ‘that rating’ that the manager gives an employee during performance review season, or something objective?

    Also what information does the hiring manager receive? Is it something like a simple ranked list of people / a simple ’employability’ score for each person, or is it something more nuanced like a personality profile with scores on different dimensions? If the latter, what evidence is that that these nuanced scores are associated with work performance?

    @Ben – thanks for offering to do the podcast. I’ll be really interested in it. I assume my questions are basic IO questions that you’d have covered as a matter of routine.

    • Sorry – I somehow missed the paragraph where the report card was described. Still, I’d like to know how strongly those scores in that report card are meant to predict

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