Remote Interview / Video Interview Advice for Interviewees
Don’t Panic you won’t need the mask for a Video Interview. To be fair I wasn’t sure what to call this article, and have decided to settle on video interviewing unless anyone has a better suggestion?
Video interviewing is now the go-to resource for companies still looking to hire in the current Covid 19 lockdown
Although different companies will use different technologies; the current favourites seem to be Skype, Zoom and Google Hangouts. You could even use Facetime or WhatsApp but they just don’t seem as professional. The following advice will work for all:
· Find a quiet, private, well-lit place, free from possible interruptions.
· Ensure your internet connection is stable.
· Check that your computer’s audio is working.
· Test your computer’s webcam.
· Don’t “WING IT”!! Still do full preparation as you would for a face to face interview. Maybe have some small notes or questions in readiness on your note book
· Double check the time and date for the interview. You need to be punctual in the same way as you would for a face to face interview.
· Close any unnecessary tabs and applications.
· Dress professionally maybe not a full suit, that may be a bit overkill, but at least look smart and not be in your joggers or worse still your pyjamas!
· Have a quick check at what is in the background (maybe tidy this small area, think of all these Instagrammers; I cannot believe their houses are really that tidy)
· Have a pen, notepad and copy of your CV on your desk ready.
· Show you are listening! Nod and smile to show you are engaged.
· Use hand gestures.
· Makes sure your mobile is switched to Silent mode.
Eye contact is very important during a face to face interview and you still want to maintain that level of connection during a video interview, however alien and awkward this may feel to you.
Try to avoid the instinct to look directly at your interviewer on the screen and try to instead direct your gaze at the webcam. By doing this it is likely that your eyes will align more with the interviewers. When you are listening look back at the screen.
Practice, Practice Practice. Practice with your webcam and screen before. It might be useful to higher your screen or laptop (maybe on some books) to give a more flattering angle. I have noticed even on the television people not doing this and then realising halfway through an interview that the camera is directly pointing up a nostril and becoming increasingly distracted by this and not focusing on the task in hand.
On the subject of being distracted, try to make sure you will not be distracted by “others”. Either by locking the kids and pets out of the room or by asking everyone on your household nicely to leave you alone for half an hour …… Not sure how well this will work with pets. If this fails maybe bribery will work?
Set out a bottle or glass of water for yourself (just in case) you have a dry mouth attack! However, tempting as it may be, please don’t decide to have a Corona beer at the ready for this purpose.
What if after getting all this in place, things do still go wrong ? ….
Don’t melt into a mess and give up all hope ! You can still save the day
· Before the interview try to see if you can have a back up phone number in case technology fails
· If suddenly noise interrupts such as sirens, or more likely in my house sudden manic dog woofing as they have spotted someone 3 gardens away! Know where the mute button is. With your ninja skills at the ready maybe no one will notice. If you are not quite that quick yet, just apologise and ask for a few moments until the noise has gone
· And if the lock, bribery or asking nicely has not worked and someone does enter the room during the interview. Quickly apologise, mute the microphone, turn off the camera and quickly deal with this before returning to the interview.
Best of luck!!