It may be a whole new world in the business sector right now, but this doesn’t mean that interviews aren’t going ahead and people aren’t being hired. There are many sectors where hiring continues and companies have simply shifted how they operate.
This has obviously seen the rise of video interviews as the new norm which presents new challenges for companies and candidates alike. So what do you need to do to ensure you give the best possible video interview?
1. Get Dressed!
Whilst it’s incredibly tempting to rock up to a video interview in your best, at home loungewear, getting dressed as though you were meeting the interviewer face to face is imperative. If you would wear a suit and tie to an interview normally, wear a suit and tie in a video interview.
It will likely feel weird sitting in your house fully dressed up, but when it comes to making a good first impression, it is always better to be over dressed than underdressed. Physically being in the right clothing will also help your brain make the mental shift into a professional, baller mindset.
2. Check your Tech.
Check your tech and then check it again. This includes your laptop charge, internet connection / speed, whether your webcam is clear and functioning, do you have the right applications or plugins that you need and is your username professional.
If possible, do a trial call to a friend of family member ahead of time to ensure that the platform you need to use is properly working. If it isn’t, this should give you plenty of time to get it working.
Turn your phone off or onto silent. If you wouldn’t want it ringing in a face to face interview, it shouldn’t be ringing in a video interview.
3. Have a Backup Plan.
Even if you’ve done all the above, something could still go wrong on the day so have a backup plan in place like being able to tether to your mobile or setting a system in place with your interviewer should the connection drop out.
4. Location, Location, Location.
Try to pick a quiet spot in your home that is well lit and free from potential noises or distractions (like pets, animals, roommates or other family members). Whilst people are definitely more accommodating of these sorts of interruptions at the moment, it is still best to try and avoid them if you can.
If you are sitting near a window, be mindful having too much backlighting (it will make your screen go dark to the point of not being able to see your face) and of what might be going on outside that could potentially distract your interviewer.
If you do have other people at home with you, make sure you talk to them before the interview so that they understand you don’t wish to be interrupted.
5. Preparation is Key.
Like any other interview, preparation is absolutely key. Ensure you have done your research on the company and if possible interviewer / team where this information is available.
Go through your own experience as well so your achievements and skills are fresh in your mind and write yourself a bullet point “cheat sheet” to sit on your desk of key points that you would like to get across to your interviewer.
You should also have some pre-considered questions that you might want to ask that will help you understand if the company you’re speaking with is going to be a good fit for you.
6. Early Login.
It’s a good idea to get to your screen at least 10 minutes before the call to ensure that you are mentally switched on, do a last tech check and ensure you don’t accidentally miss the call should they call a bit early.
7. Body Language.
Body language is an important part of any interview be it face to face or over video conference. Make sure that you maintain good eye contact and show engaged body language like good posture, nodding your head at appropriate intervals, leaning forward to show interest etc.
Project enthusiasm through your voice and body – energy isn’t necessarily as easily read through a screen, so be mindful of how you vocally and physically come across.
8. End with a Thank You.
In any interview, phone, face to face or video, you should always thank the interviewer for their time and the opportunity to interview with their company. Even if you don’t think the job is right for you now, leaving on a good note will keep the door open in the future.