A survey of 506 companies revealed that 47% use video interviewing to shorten the hiring timeframe, and 22% would consider it for interviewing candidates that aren’t local. Statistics show that video technology is being used by at least 60% of hiring managers and recruiters. Given that most of us are currently working remotely, that percentage is likely to be much higher.
Set-up and tech test
The first step is to ensure that you have the right set-up. If possible, find a room in your house with natural light and a neutral, clutter-free background. The key is to face the light, if it’s behind you, there will be shadows. Make sure you have a desk/table to rest your laptop/computer on and a comfortable chair. There’s nothing more distracting than someone fidgeting their way through an interview. Test your internet speed to be sure it’s fast enough. Finally, technology is unpredictable, so be sure to do a complete run-through the day before your interview.
Preparation for your video interview
Practice for the video interview as you would an in-person meeting. Consider doing a practice run with a close friend or family member. Don’t rely on notes as it will look awkward on camera. If you need to just have a few prompts on a sticky note at the side of your screen. It goes without saying to dress professionally, and based on the company culture. It will help you to feel and act like a winning candidate. It’s important to make sure your environment is free of distractions. Here are some steps to remove interruptions like the following:
• Set your phones to silent
• Put pets in another room
• Let roommates know not to bother you
• Close your windows to eliminate outside noises
• Put a sign on your front door alerting people not to ring the doorbell
With a little planning, you’ll be able to prevent any unneeded disturbances.
During the video interview
At the start of the call, have a copy of your resume, pen, paper, and a glass of water nearby. Maintain eye contact by directing your gaze at the webcam, rather than your interviewer on the screen. Keep your mood upbeat and let your personality shine through. Maintain proper posture and avoid fidgeting. Listen actively by nodding when appropriate, so they know you’re giving them your full attention. Smile throughout the interview, but not so much that it appears unnatural.
After the video interview
As always, send the interviewer a thank you email following the discussion. Follow-up with them on the status if you don’t hear back within a reasonable timeframe. Remember, be patient. With the current crisis, the process could take longer than usual.
Ultimately, preparing for a video interview is the same as preparing for a face to face meeting. Research the company, communicate your value, and develop a list of intelligent questions. As they say, “practice makes perfect.” The more you practice using video for interviewing, the more comfortable you will feel. There’s no question that the hiring process is becoming more technologically advanced. By embracing this visual medium, you’ll soon be ready to edge out the competition.