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Get Ready to Ace Your Next Video Job Interview

Many companies, especially those with a global presence, incorporate video job interviews into their hiring process because they provide a fuller view of a person than a phone call, while saving time and travel costs. If you are in the market for a new job, you may be asked to participate in a video job interview. Here’s how you can best prepare:

Test your equipment — Make sure your computer and webcam work properly. Adjust the settings (volume, view, etc.) in advance so you don’t have to adjust it during your interview. Consider wearing a headset, headphones or earbuds if the sound isn’t clear. If you are using Zoom, remember to make sure your background is free of distraction. While the virtual backgrounds are fun, you should choose something more basic and simple for your interview. Save the “Caribbean Beach” background for those casual chats with friends and family.

Frame yourself — Think about where you will sit and what’s in the background, especially if you opt out of using Zoom’s virtual background feature. Make it as professional and presentable as possible. And, always consider the lighting. You want the employer to see your face clearly, not a blurry or blown-out version of yourself.

Dig in — Find a quiet room away from distractions to have the interview. Turn off your email (avoid the “ding!” of new mail) and other programs.

Take it slow — Video job interviews are the next best thing to being there, but there can be a time delay during calls. Be sure to speak slowly, even waiting a few beats after you finish a sentence. Otherwise, you and the interviewer could be constantly talking over each other. Awkward!

Dress the part — You may be able to video chat with family members while sporting your favorite SpongeBob pajamas, but a job interview requires interview attire. Dress professionally, have a polished look, sit up straight, and pay attention to your body language.

Show your personality — It’s not easy to get a “real feel” for a person through a video job interview. Video provides a general impression, but a person’s subtleties are difficult to detect. Make sure to get comfortable in front of the computer screen so your personality shines through cyberspace.

Rehearse and Prepare — The best way to get yourself comfortable in front of a screen? Practice! If you haven’t done a lot of video chatting, grab a friend and do a trial run. Ask for honest feedback about how you come across and fine-tune your presentation.

Video job interviews are often the first step in the interview process, and have become even more prevalent in hiring practices due to COVID-19. By following these tips, you should be able to ace that interview and land your next job.

Photo credit: Lukas Blazek on Unsplash


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