Video interviews are sink or swim. Although the interviewer won’t see your nervous foot tapping, they will notice every facial expression and moment of eye contact. If given the choice to go in to the office or chat over Skype for an interview, always choose to go into the office, but if not given the choice, here are 5 things you must do to prepare.
- Test your technology
This is your opportunity to prove you know how to use technology. Do a test run beforehand to make sure you remember your password and know how to turn on your microphone and camera. Make sure your computer is fully charged and your WIFI connection is strong. Set your camera at eye level if you want to avoid double chins.
(Bonus tip: Ask yourself – is your username professional? Seriously, if you created your account when you were in high school you might have a username that’s pretty embarrassing!)
- Dress appropriately
Your friends might be impressed if you tell them you interviewed without pants, but the interviewers won’t be if you unexpectedly need to get up! Dress professionally, head to toe. (Trust me, they know.)
- Look at your lighting
Set up your light behind the computer so your face is clear and you avoid casting unflattering shadows. If you wear glasses, you might want to dim your computer screen to help with the glare.
- Eliminate any potential distractions
This includes closing all of your tabs, muting computer alerts and turning off your phone. Make sure you’re really alone – no children, partner, flatmates, even pets! You might think you’re doing the right thing by sitting in a coffee shop, but the noise will be distracting and it’s unlikely you will be able to speak freely. Even a cluttered background can be distracting, so choose your space wisely.
- Prepare some notes
Unlike other interview situations, you can have some notes in front of you so use these to your advantage! Include some critical pieces of information such as any questions you want to ask, specific numbers you can drop in that quantify your success, and names! If you’re anything like me, the pressure of interviewing can sometimes mean they go in one ear and out the other. Quickly take note of who’s who so you can address everyone personally by name.