So, you crafted an excellent resume and now the moment has come for a virtual interview with your potential new boss. With remote interviews being the norm these days, you may be wondering how to prepare, what to wear, and how to land the most common interview questions. Look no further!
Preparation is key for virtual interviewing. Job seekers have two choices when it comes to virtual interviewing. Embrace it and have fun, or risk being passed over for the job due to poor performance. Ready to be the stand-out candidate? Follow our four simple steps below to prepare for a virtual interview.
1) Choose your “set,” your background
A job search is a professional environment, and your background should reflect that. Make sure it’s well lit, clean, organized and pleasant to the interviewer on the other end. Limit distractions and remove unnecessary décor items. The last thing you want is for the interviewer to be more interested in your background than you. Lastly, make sure the webcam is at eye level so the interviewer can see a full picture of you, not just your neck or forehead.
2) Do your homework
Research the company and learn as much as you can about them and the role you’re interviewing for. The obvious place to start is the company website, Internet search or local business journals. The more you know, the better. Ask yourself, how do your skills and work experience match this job? Be prepared to answer questions explaining why you are the best person for this job, what your strengths and weaknesses are, and why you are leaving your current job. Be prepared with real-life examples that will highlight your work experience. Use the STAR strategy (Situation, Task, Action, Result). If you’re not familiar with this approach, do some research and plan accordingly.
3) Be mindful of your image
Did you know it only takes seven seconds for someone to make a first impression of you? Think about what you want the interviewer to see during your time together. You cannot interview in your pajamas, no matter how cute they are. Do not choose a business top with sweatpants. The camera could tilt. Be aware of your body language, remembering to sit up straight and shoulders back. Your hair, make-up if appropriate, body language and demeanor all make a difference. Before your interview, practice in front of a mirror or record yourself during a mock interview. Make sure you are well-hydrated beforehand so you can speak clearly. Lastly, don’t forget that you are making eye contact with a small green light on the computer near your camera. Put a sticky note close to it to remind yourself that is where and WHO you are looking at. Although this is virtual, it’s still a person-to-person meeting, so smile and be as warm and charming as you typically are in-person.
4) Eliminate distractions
Eliminate anything that could distract you. Yes, you love your dog, the most adorable dog in the world, but Sparky needs to be somewhere else during your interview. Does the garbage or lawn service come at a certain time? Make sure you schedule the interview time around anything that could disrupt you. Phones, laundry, dishwashers and microwaves can all make beeps. Make sure those things are off or away from you.
Most importantly, remember that all your attention belongs in front of the camera. Your virtual interview is equally as important as an in-person interview and could be your ticket to success. You’re on. Lights, camera, action.