7 months ago
Over the past 18 months, video interviews have become increasingly common for employers trying to work through these tough times and to create opportunities to have a team located around the world.
But what do you need to know? How can you ensure that your qualities and personality shine through the screen to the interviewer?
Online interviews mostly follow a similar structure to traditional ones, which will involve you answering the interviewer’s questions via a Zoom or Microsoft Teams call. As you aren’t meeting in person, it’s more important than ever to build a rapport with the interviewer and to fully prepare beforehand to ensure you utilise your short period of time with them in the most effective way.
Here are some useful tips to help you through the process:
Online Interview Tips
Although the format of these interviews will be different depending on the company, there are a lot of similar expectations. So what can you do to make sure you stand out from the crowd?
Do your research
As with any interview, you want to make sure that you’re not going in without first understanding the company. Spend some time in the run-up to the interview researching the company history, the services they offer and what they pride themselves on to give you a better understanding of what they are looking for. If possible, also research your interviewer, they can usually be found on LinkedIn or on the company website this makes the interview much less scary as you know who you will be talking to!
Dress for an interview
Just because your interviewing at home doesn’t mean you don’t need to dress appropriately. Depending on the role, ensure you are wearing a smart outfit as you would if you were interviewing in person.
A strong light source pointed at your face to keep it visible
The ideal lighting is a large window in front of you (behind the laptop), this will show your face for the interviewer and as well as showing your facial expression clearly. You will want to avoid backlighting as much as possible as it can turn you into a silhouette – if they have requested you have your camera on and the interviewer can’t see your face, it could make the whole process a bit more difficult.
Sit centrally and use body language and hand gestures
Now that you have your prep and lighting sorted, you want to focus on your position on the screen. Remember, you want to be professional, fully participating and clear. By sitting directly in the centre of the screen rather than to the side it gives you space on both sides to use you’re hands and body to further enforce your answers and show you are interested and involved with this process.
Show engagement and focus
When on the interview try to look into the camera and not at the interviewer’s screen. This makes it appear as if you are holding eye contact rather than looking down while answering, an important tip for both online and in-person interviews.
Eliminate any distractions
You’re doing a brilliant job, thinking about your answers properly through the interview and someone comes into your room or your partner turns the washing machine on right next to you. To avoid this, make sure anyone who will be in the house that you have the interview so they can give you some privacy and quiet time.
Choose a quiet place
It is ideal to choose a quiet place rather than heading to a restaurant or a busy public area for the interview. If you are unable to do this, don’t worry. We are all human and understand everyone’s circumstances are different, you just need to be honest about it beforehand. They won’t see the noise as a reflection of you especially if you have tried to find somewhere but have been unable to.
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