Make Your Video Interview a Masterpiece
The acceptance of video interviews likely will be one of the few positive legacies of the pandemic. Now that interviewing for your dream tech job does not need to happen in person, how can you turn a typical video interview into a job-winning performance?
Check Your Props
Devote time to familiarizing yourself with the video/chat platform used for the interview, especially if the platform is new to you. Test the features you could potentially use like audio mute, camera settings, sharing the screen, chatting, maximizing/minimizing the screen, viewing options, etc. Each program differs in navigation and layout, and you don’t want to be caught off-guard during the interview.
Make sure your internet connection is strong by:
- Using an ethernet cable with your computer
- Closing applications or windows on your device that aren’t needed for the interview
- Turn off your phone and any other device not necessary for the interview
- Finding optimal spaces in your home for the connection, such as near the router
Locate the microphone on your device so you know which direction to speak. Turning your head or looking off-screen while you talk can negatively impact audio quality.
TIP: Recruit a friend to help you test the distance you should sit from your device so you can be heard.
Show up fully prepared. Do your research in advance, talk to your recruiter to understand what the employer is looking for, and be ready to explain why you are well suited to the position. Have in front of you written key points about your qualifications and your questions about the position and company.
There’s more potential for awkwardness and miscommunication during video interviews than in person, so practicing with others will make you more aware of your communication tics. The more calm you project through clear, confident speech and positive body language betters your chances for a positive outcome.
TIP: conversations via video can feel slower or disjointed. After a question is asked, wait an extra half of a second to be sure they are finished speaking before you respond. Speak smoothly and use your tone to signal that you are concluding.
Clear the Stage
Take a minute to scan your space and think about potential visual or audio distractions, such as people, pets, ceiling fans, open windows, etc. Reduce the likelihood that your interviewer will be distracted by what’s behind you or negatively react to any personal items around you.
Prevent people walking in and out of the video during the interview by placing a sign near your desk or outside your door that you are on camera. And if interruptions are unavoidable, ask to change the interview time. Just as an in-person interview, you deserve the full attention of your interviewer.
TIP: Turn off your Alexa or Google Home speakers – you don’t want Google Home to suddenly interrupt the interview with the weather forecast for London.
While a video interview in your living room might feel more casual, remember you are being judged and assessed for your fit for the role, so dress professionally. That means wearing something other than sweats in case you have to stand up for any reason.
Like an in-person interview, you want to be ready and in position a few minutes before the discussion. This will ensure the camera is at a proper angle, featuring your face and shoulders. Have a glass of water and tissue next to you in case you need them.
Take a few minutes for small talk at the beginning of the interview. Keep it simple and natural so that you come across as authentic, relaxed and personable in that crucial first impression.
Engage the interviewer with strong eye contact. Try not to look away during your interview or look down at your notes too frequently. Your eye contact reveals a good deal about how you’re feeling and thinking about what the interviewer is sharing with you.
TIP: Make sure your audio is coming through clearly. In fact, check once near the interview start if the audio is OK and if not, do something about it. Remind the person at the other end to please interrupt if they can’t hear you.
Lastly, send a thank you note following the interview. Be sure to not only thank the interviewer but anyone else who assisted in making the video interview possible. Relationship building is essential as ever, despite the screen in between.
Since 2010, SIGnature Recruiting has operated with respect towards all of our candidates and clients, making us the preferred IT recruitment agency in the Greater Vancouver area. If you are seeking talent or an employer, let’s talk.