The video interview has seen a marked increase in popularity in recent years as technology has become more accessible and affordable, and for good reason. The convenience of being able to conduct a “face-to-face” interview instantly without travel arrangements or extensive logistics provides great value for both the hiring practice and job seeker as well, as both parties are able to easily ascertain whether the opportunity is a fit.
Here are some handy tips to follow if you’ve landed an interview via videoconferencing:
1) Know what platform your video conference will be conducted on.
Is it Zoom, GoToMeeting, Facetime, Skype, or some other platform?
2) Download any needed software on your computer or device.
Test the software with a friend or family member before your interview. Spending a little time getting familiar with the software will significantly reduce your anxiety.
3) Pay attention to your microphone settings and be sure your audio works.
Consider using a bluetooth headset if the audio is via the phone so that your hands are free.
4) Find a quiet place free of distraction.
While most webcams typically aren’t wide-angle, pay attention to your background. Take a few minutes to tidy up before your video interview, just in case your interviewer catches a glimpse of what’s behind you.
5) Do all you can to ensure a stable internet connection.
If the internet at home lags out every time your kid is playing Fornite with his friends or your significant other watches Netflix, consider having them abstain from such hobbies for an hour while you conduct your interview to ensure a smooth internet connection. Also consider buying a new modem or router, if needed, for a more long-term fix.
6) Close unneeded software and tabs.
These could potentially interfere with your computer’s performance or become distracting during the interview.
7) Make sure you are familiar with your microphone function and that your web cam is working.
You should be familiar with how to adjust audio levels, mute and unmute your microphone, and enable/disable your webcam on the fly. Don’t trust that settings you’ve set previously will be the same the next time you log onto your computer.
8) Pay attention to proper lighting.
Webcams in recent years have improved low light performance, but make an effort to ensure the room you’re in is properly lit and that the interviewer can clearly see your face.
9) Dress professionally and try to avoid bright colors.
Despite the joke of only being presentable “from the wast up” for a video interview, consider dressing professionally from head to toe as though you were meeting your potential new employer in person. You might need to get up unexpectedly during the interview, so it’s best to play it safe.
10) Have a pen and pad at your desk.
Remember, it’s perfectly fine (and encouraged) to take notes during an interview. It’s also perfectly acceptable to have a list of questions or topics you wish to cover. Most interviewers consider this a sign of proper preparation.
11) Pay attention to how your camera is capturing your image.
A head and shoulders shot is best. You can usually do a test shot from your webcam.
12) Sit up straight and look directly at the camera.
While it may feel strange, make a conscious effort to look directly into the camera when speaking rather than simply watching the screen throughout the interview. Subliminally, direct eye contact, even through a video interview, communicates your attentiveness and interest in the position.
13) Do your best to act as you would during an in-person meeting.
Use hand motions where appropriate and normal facial expressions.
14) If you are using a tablet or smartphone, use a stand to achieve the proper perspective so your hands can be unoccupied.
This will also help prevent any camera shaking or vibrations, which can be distracting and look unprofessional.
If you don’t have proper video conferencing technology, you have several options. You can rent or borrow equipment. Many co-working spaces have facilities available to rent by the hour. Public libraries are increasingly offering private areas with teleconferencing facilities. It’s also perfectly acceptable to just be honest and tell the interviewer you would prefer a phone call because you don’t have ready access to that technology.
If you’re looking for a job with great potential, reach out to ETS. We find great opportunities every day. One of them might be the perfect place for you!