Seven Tips for Nailing a Virtual Interview
The way we interact with one another has shifted greatly in the past couple of months. This includes how students are connecting and interviewing with recruiters. The new normal in recruiting is employers interviewing candidates virtually. There are do’s and don’ts for interviewing on camera, make sure you are ready by following the seven tips below:
- Location: Find a quiet, comfortable, and well-lit place in your home for your interview. Let your family or roommates know in advance that you are interviewing and to avoid interrupting you during that time. Provide them with the exact start and end time of your meeting including your preparation and set up time. You will also want to put away any pets to avoid surprise and distracting appearances.
- Background: Make sure the background of your environment is suitable. Remove any posters or distracting elements. Some video apps allow for backgrounds to blurred or adding in an image of your own. Test out your options before the call to see how they translate on camera. You will also want to make sure that any area visible on the camera is tidy.
- Practice: Prepare for your virtual interview by viewing yourself through your platform’s camera. Ask your friends or family to give their opinions on how you present on video and audio. Sometimes our voices can appear much different than how we imagine it to be. Determine whether your voice comes off as friendly, or if you need to practice inflection with your speaking style. Additionally, you want to make sure the camera from your computer is as close to eye level as you can get it.
- Attire: Dress as if you were attending the interview in person, which means business professional attire. Just because it’s a virtual interview, it’s still your first impression with an employer. IMPORTANT: make sure to wear professional bottoms as well. There is a chance that you might have to grab headphones or address any adjustments during the interview, forcing you to reveal those dapper sweatpants.
- Prepare: Write your notes of the given company and questions before the interview. An advantage of virtual interviews is that you can have your notes and questions handy on your computer screen during your conversation.
- Connect: At the beginning of the interview make sure to greet the employer and ask how their day is going. Virtual interviews are less personable than in-person interviews, therefore make sure to connect with the interviewer as much as possible in the beginning and end stages.
- Attentiveness: Display to the interviewer that you are listening and attentive to what they are saying. Nodding your head when appropriate and keeping the camera at eye level are some ways to improve in this aspect. It is also important to show enthusiasm by smiling and engaging in the virtual environment.
Virtual interviews are not something to be fearful of. Assuring that everything is set up on the technology side of things, the main advantage of virtual interviews is that they are “virtual”. Looking into a camera can be more comforting than in-person interviews for many people. I hope that these tips were helpful to you and remember…wear pants!
For more information about the Career Connections Center’s virtual services or to connect with a Career Coach, please visit career.ufl.edu/virtualservices.