SOFTWARE developed in York is behind what is believed to be the world’s first virtual job interview of its kind., an online video interview software business created by York developer David Dewey, allows businesses to interview candidates with avatars – a virtual representation of the interviewer.

Based at York St John University’s creative incubator The Phoenix Centre, Mr Dewey developed the programme to save employers time in the initial selection process by simulating real-life interviews, as well as managing liaison and feedback with candidates.

He said: “The advances in video conferencing and call technology in recent years have led to a dramatic increase in the use of video devices in every aspect of our lives, and recruiters are now taking advantage of these benefits.

“By using an avatar to conduct the interview, our software ensures that the process is professional and consistent while also enabling the recruiting company to hire higher quality candidates.

“For candidates, it makes the experience as natural as possible, simulating interaction with a real person.”

Mr Dewey has received financial backing for from Tim Whitworth, who co-founded the retail business Republic.

Mr Whitworth said: “Having first-hand knowledge of the challenges and costs of being responsible for recruitment in a large business with a 2,500-plus workforce, I could immediately see the huge benefits offered by a professional online interviewing service which provides candidates and recruiters with a life-like interview experience.”