How to smash that Virtual Interview
Virtual Interviews were fast becoming the norm, but the pandemic has really forced companies to now conduct all their interviews online. Since the pandemic began right at the beginning of last year, I have conducted many virtual interviews. I have noticed that candidates can be quite uncomfortable during the first interview due to interview nerves and having to look at themselves on the screen. People can be too focused on how they are presenting themselves and not focus on what exactly is being asked.
If you have an online interview coming up, below are some useful tips I can recommend to prepare and present yourself well during the interview:
- Look presentable – dress appropriately from top to toe. Ideally, you shouldn’t have to get up from your desk during the interview, but you never know what might happen! I’ve had this happen a few times while conducting interviews so make sure to dress the bottom half as professionally as the top – no pjs!
- Mind your background – whether it’s a virtual background or your own background. De-clutter and only select professional looking screens– no beeches or bars!
- Noise & Distractions – make sure there is no distracting noise in the background like a washing machine / dog barking / cats jumping up on the table and try to avoid doing the interview in a restaurant or public area.
- Don’t have the camera too close to you. Make sure your interviewer can see your top half and not just your head.
- Make sure your Audio is working properly and you can both hear one another.
- Make sure your internet speed is suitable for the interview.
- Once you are happy with your position, don’t pay too much attention to yourself on screen– pay the full 100% attention to your interviewer and make eye contact with the camera so it looks like you are making eye contact with the interviewer. It doesn’t look professional if you are constantly looking at yourself which results in broken rapport with the interviewer.
- Have a trial run with a friend – ask a friend / colleague to have a trial virtual interview with you beforehand to check internet speed / audio / background / how you come across and also practice your questions.
- Other than that, the same rules apply as with a face to face interviews – research the company, practice your questions, make sure you have lots of examples you can provide for the skills they are looking for, be confident with your answers however, not overly confident and no waffling, create rapport from the start, know your CV and (or) application form, prepare your own questions and never have a bad word to say about a former employer.
Hopefully, these tips and tricks should help you with any future interviews you may have coming up. Good luck!