News Article

JOB INTERVIEW TIPS - 5 Tips For Acing The Video-Interview

Posted 20th May 2021 • Written by Andrew Fennell on •

Over the past year we have seen a huge increase in the number of companies incorporating video interviews into their application process, due to lockdown and travel restrictions across the globe. With more than half of employers saying they will continue to conduct video interviews after restrictions have been lifted, it’s safe to say that you are likely to encounter one in your next job search.

This means that being prepared for an appearance on camera is essential if you want to make any big career moves over the next few years. Video interviews come with their own unique set of challenges and you need to overcome them all to prove yourself as the number one candidate in today’s market.

Get your tech right

In a face-to-face interview it’s normally safe to assume that the interviewer can see and hear you clearly, but in a video interview you bear some responsibility to ensure those factors. Essentially, you need to have an adequate technology setup that provides a sufficient level of audio, visual and internet connection speed.

Nowadays most home PCs or laptops will have a high quality camera to provide clear visuals, but built in microphones are not always up to the task. Most video-meeting attendants can tolerate a grainy picture, but if they cannot hear what you are saying, that could ruin or even end the conversation. So, it’s worth investing in a basic plug-in microphone to ensure that you can be heard clearly, and you won’t have to shout or repeat yourself throughout the interview.

Take it seriously

One of the most damaging mistakes that candidates make with video interviews, is failing to approach them with the same level of seriousness as a face-to-face meeting. Recruiters and employers will be assessing you at every point of contact you have with them, even emails and brief phone conversations, so any kind of interview should be treated with the utmost respect.

Pre-Covid you may have got away with a half-hearted approach to a video-interview, but now there is a much bigger focus on video-interviews, especially in cases where face-to-faces are not possible. For the next year or so, it would be safest to assume that the video-interview will be the most important one in the process, and treat it accordingly.

So, carry out all of the research you normally would for an in-person interview, including the company, dress-code, the role, and being able to describe why you are a strong candidate. Identify common questions in your profession and prepare answers for them, just as you would for a face-to-face.

Prepare your interview space

One thing that you probably never had to worry about during past job interviews, is how tidy your house is. However, during a video-interview the room which you film in is being showcased to potential employers, so you need to consider how it reflects on you.

A messy, cluttered room will not give a professional appearance and can also be distracting for the interviewer. Make sure that you pick a relatively plain room with good lighting to conduct the interview in, and ensure it’s clean and tidy.

Well before the interview you should setup your chair and camera, to check that you can be seen clearly in the picture and there is nothing in the background that you would not want an employer to see.

Practice your video etiquette

Whilst video-conferencing technology has come on leaps and bounds in recent years, it’s still not quite the same as an in-person conversation, and requires some behaviour adaption from participants.

There are subtle differences to remember, such as looking into the camera when speaking (as opposed to looking at the faces on the screen) and waiting a couple of seconds to answer questions to ensure the speaker has finished.

To scope out all of these nuances and avoid any awkward moments at the interview, make a few video calls to friends and family beforehand and get familiar with how video conferencing works. This will also help you to iron out any technology problems before the big day.

Know your facts and figures

Employers have always been interested in facts and figures that demonstrate the value you can bring to them. How many customers have you signed up? How many months ahead of schedule did you finish that project? Now that remote work has become the norm, employers are relying on staff to deliver those results without the same level of supervision and support that they had whilst in the office.

As part of your interview preparation, you should be familiarising yourself with all of the important numbers related to your role, and focusing on those that can be solely attributed to yourself, as opposed to your team or wider business. If you can work these figures into your answers throughout the interview, you will quantify the benefits you can bring to the company, making you an attractive hire.

Although the fundamentals of the job interview have remained the same for many years, technology and global events have disrupted them greatly in the last twelve months. However, if you’re able to adapt your preparation, keep your video-call technology optimal and provide yourself with an effective home meeting space, you should be able to keep acing those interviews.

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Click to see more Interview and CV tips from People First Recruitment to help in your search for a Mandarin speaking job, a Japanese job, a Language job or a job in Supply Chain, Procurement or Demand Planning in London & the UK