With the world moving towards a digital era, our Senior Recruitment Consultant, Kimarie Meyers, has come up with her top 6 tips for a virtual interview!
- Test the technology
Test that all of your technology such as camera, microphone and internet connection are working well in advance. Ensure you have any required software and familiarise yourself with the platform you will be using so you can use it effectively during the interview.
In the 10 to 15 minutes before your interview, sign into the platform the recruiter has organised. Turn on the sound and video to ensure everything is in working order, ready for your interview.
- Wear professional attire
You should dress the same with a virtual interview as you would in a face-to-face interview. Wearing your best business attire will not only make you appear professional and excited about the opportunity, but it will also make you feel more confident.
- Limit distractions and create a set
Find a quiet location in your home without distractions. If possible, sit in front of a blank background but if you don’t have an empty wall ensure the area is clean and simple so the interviewer can focus their attention on you. Try to place your computer on a table or desk instead of your lap or the couch.
If you share the house tell other people about the area you’ll be using for your interview, the time of your interview, and that you and your quiet space will be off-limits during that time. You might also need to place pets in a designated room during the interview.
Lastly, check your lighting. Sitting near a window works best, as the best way not to appear washed out is to keep the light in front of you.
- Prepare in advance
As with a face to face interview, you’ll get the best results if you prepare in advance. Being in front of your computer doesn’t mean you should rely on the ability to quickly look up answers or read directly from written notes. You should prepare so that you are able to have a natural conversation.
Always do your research on a company before the interview. Getting this background information is paramount to demonstrating your interest in the position as well as your knowledge of the industry. As a minimum, research information about the company and the role, and do a Google search for current news on the company.
Be ready to explain your resume in detail and have your professional story down to a two- or three-minute pitch. Be ready for likely questions.
Also be ready to answer questions like, ‘How long did you work there’ and ‘Why do you want to leave that position?” quickly and without hesitation.
Familiarise yourself with the job advertisement or position description and make a list of your relevant achievements. Know your selling points so you can reiterate those in the interview.
- Use professional body language
Because interviewing via video or phone limits the ability to communicate with body language, it is important to utilise body language in a clear, professional way. For example, if you get a question that is unexpected, make sure to stay poised and take a moment to collect your thoughts.
Sit up straight and ensure your camera is placed so that your face is in the middle of your screen. Ensure you utilise body language in a clear, professional way. For example, an unexpected question, ensure you stay poised and take a moment to collect your thoughts.
You might not be able to shake hands but body language such as smiling and giving a confident wave with eye contact can still show confidence and enthusiasm.
- Listen and Ask Questions
Listen carefully to the interviewer and be careful not to interject – this is even more important with a virtual interview because even a tiny internet lag can throw off the rhythm and make your interjection sound like a rude interruption.
Be ready to take notes if need be. Write down anything you’d like further clarification on ready for when you have the chance to ask your questions.
Good questions are a way you can show you are serious about the role. Most recruiters will conclude the interview by asking if you have any questions or anything further to add.
Senior Recruitment Consultant