The high cost of corporate travel and the widespread availability of video chat technology have combined to create a new trend in the interview process. From the mailroom to the boardroom, employers are increasingly turning away from traditional in-person interviews in favor of their video-enabled equivalents.
Sometimes these video interviews are designed to whittle the field of potential candidates. Other times, they are used to make the final hiring decision. But no matter what their purpose, these unique interviews create both challenges and opportunities for the affected job seekers.
If you ace the video interview, you could find yourself on the receiving end of a job offer. If not, you could be back in the job hunting arena. Here are 10 timely tips to help you make the most of your first, or your next, video job interview.
- Set up a neutral background. You do not want anything to distract from you and your abilities, so create a neutral background free of anything that could distract the interviewer.
- Block out noise. Nothing sends a video interview off track faster than a barking dog or screaming kid, so make sure you block out any extraneous noise.
- Test, and retest, your video equipment. You do not want to wait until the interview is in process to find out that your video chat software is not working the way it should, or that your webcam has gone on the fritz. Testing the equipment ahead of time is critical, so be sure you check it out ahead of time.
- Make notes and keep them handy. The great thing about a video interview is you can have notes at your disposal. You still need to know about the job and the company, but your notes can be a big help.
- Dress to impress. Now is not the time to dress down, so grab your best business suit and make sure every hair is in place. You want to put your best foot, and face, forward.
- Smile and make eye contact. It can be hard to maintain eye contact when the interviewers are in a different room, but you should always do your best. You want to project a confident and friendly image, and that starts with a killer smile.
- Speak up. You want to project an air of confidence, so speak up and avoid mumbling. You may need to speak a bit louder to make sure everyone can hear you.
- Check the lighting in the room. You want the room you choose to be well lit so that everyone can see you clearly.
- Frame yourself carefully. For maximum impact, you should frame yourself from the chest up. Test the image you are projecting before the interview and maintain the same posture throughout.
- Thank the interviewers for their time and always follow up. The same rules apply to video and in-person interviews - you should give the interviewers a sincere thank you and follow up with a handwritten thank you note.
The widespread availability of video chat technology has made online interviews more popular than ever. No matter what kind of job you are seeking, chances are your next interview will take place via video chat. The 10 tips listed above can help you ace that video interview, so you can get the job you want.