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How To Succeed In An Virtual Interview

May 19 2020

Virtual interviews are by no means a new concept and have actually made headway since Skype was launched. 60% of hiring managers and recruiters utilize video technology to reduce their hiring timeframe (Jobbatical, 2019). Many would argue that it’s not the same as an in-person meeting, some of the challenges being technical difficulties, interview scheduling conflicts or candidates struggling to pick up on social cues etc. Of course now, job seekers have no choice. If you’re in the market for a job, stop being camera shy and succeed in your next virtual interview by following these tips:

Use the right device

Desktop computers and laptops are the most widely accepted mediums for online interviews. Interviewing through the lens of your mobile phone may not be the best option because phones struggle with poor connectivity, software glitches and as you hold your phone, the constant movement can distract the viewer.

Test the meeting software

Prior to your call, conduct a test run. It is highly recommended to download the meeting software, be it Skype, Go-To Meeting or Zoom few days before your interview. Learn about the various tools and features the designated software has to offer, so you can make the most out of it during your call. Test the audio/video settings and record yourself to avoid any mistakes.

Check Background & Lighting

Establish an appropriate setting, that is quiet and uncluttered.  A desk against a plain background makes an ideal setup. Lighting is extremely important during virtual interviews. You want the interviewer to be able to see you without any distractions or shadows. If you don’t have sufficient natural lighting, then consider adding a lamp or two to brighten your surroundings.

Dress For Success

Dress up like you would for an in-person interview, because first impressions are critical. Throw on a blazer or solid shirt/blouse that looks good digitally. Wear something that makes you comfortable and confident. Don’t overdo it with too much makeup or accessories. Minimalist always wins.

Practice, Practice & Practice

Be aware of your non-verbal cues, facial expressions, body language and posture.  Look into the camera and make eye contact with your employer, avoid looking down. Employers use video interviews as an opportunity to assess confidence and poise. If there is a time lag, or software glitches, make sure to stay calm. Always be prepared to ask questions and keep the conversation flowing.

Follow-up with a ‘Thank You’ note

Apart from the setting, virtual interviews are no different from face-to-face interviews. A great way of leaving a positive impression on the interviewer is to send a ‘Thank you’ note. This gives you the opportunity to re-emphasize your interest in the role, and allows you to express your excitement about the next steps in the recruitment process.

Virtual interviews are not tough to crack – preparation is the key. Testing your technology, monitoring non-verbal cues and practicing basic video etiquettes, will help you succeed in a virtual interview.

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