Virtual interviews have become increasingly popular as companies evolve to meet the needs of their employees. Video conferencing helps recruiters reach a more diverse group of candidates and is a cost-effective way to screen prospective hires. Due to the global pandemic and the need to transition many positions online, virtual interviews have become a necessity when traditional interviews are unable to take place.
So what does that mean for you as you’re looking for a new career? Set yourself up for success with proper preparation and planning.
Here is your complete guide to preparing for and mastering a virtual interview.
Avoid any potential problems by testing your camera and microphone before the interview. Technical skills are important to employers and they can easily assess your skills during a virtual interview. Make sure that your video feed looks and sounds professional prior to starting your interview. It might be necessary to invest in a new webcam or microphone to ensure a high quality video conference.
Familiarize yourself with the technology your interviewer will be using. Will it be skype, zoom or google hangout? Find out so you can fully understand how to use it prior to the interview. Also be sure to secure your internet connection to avoid unnecessary interruption.
Even though you’re not presenting yourself in person, it’s important to dress as if you are. Your attire projects professionalism so be sure to wear your business best. Reach for solid tones if you can and avoid overpowering patterns or flashy accessories. You should be the focus of the interview, not your wardrobe.
Virtual interviews come with a myriad of distractions that you wouldn’t normally have to deal with in a traditional interview. Be sure to silence your phone, turn off your TV, and situate yourself in a quiet, private area. While you can’t plan for every distraction, proper preparation can help avoid unwanted interruptions.
While you don’t know what a hiring manager will ask, it’s best to prepare responses to common interview questions. Jot down notes so you feel more prepared if the interviewer does ask any of those questions. Avoid memorizing your responses so you sound more authentic and the conversation flows naturally. And don’t forget to prepare your own list of questions to ask the hiring manager.
You’ll set yourself apart from other candidates and gain a competitive edge if you do proper research on the company. Read their website, look at reviews from current employees, and check out their social media. Be prepared to discuss your findings and how your skills can fill the gaps.
A virtual interview doesn’t allow the handshake and introductions that a traditional interview would so you’ll have to convey your confidence and authenticity through body language. Be sure to sit up, smile and maintain eye contact with the camera instead of looking down at the screen image of the hiring manager. Don’t be afraid to show your personality and engage with the interviewer. Recruiters will look for how you express yourself to determine whether you are a good fit for the company.
Within 24 hours of your virtual interview, be sure to follow up with everyone you spoke with and thank him or her for their time. This is also your opportunity to elaborate on any questions or discussion points and express your continued interest in the position. Just be sure to keep your message concise.
There’s no question that interviewing can be one of the most intimidating parts of the job search. Be sure to follow these tips and you’ll have the keys to succeed.