12 Tips to Nail Your Video Interview - A Recruiter's Perspective
Updated: Sep 2
You've just received an email - and you've been invited for a video interview! You might be feeling nervous or excited - either way, it's normal. Video interviews has become an essential part of the hiring process (especially since COVID-19).
Here are some tips from an insider's perspective after having screened thousands of talents through online interviews via Google Hangouts or Zoom. Let's dive in!
1) Take the Interview in a Quiet Conducive Place
Make sure there are no distractions during the call e.g., pets running around in background/sounds coming through window such as construction equipment outside.
Don't take interviews in noisy places like bars, cafes
Make sure pets are somewhere else before initiating the call (you don't want them making distracting noises)
Use earphones or noise cancelling headphones to reduce background sounds
2) Look Professional and Dress Well
If interviewing from home, it's best to dress in a way that you would if you were going into an office - so avoid pajamas and slippers at all costs! You want to look professional for a reason and first impressions do matter. Keep clothing simple. Choose professional attire, avoid distracting patterns and prints.
3) Research on the company and who you are talking to
Knowledge is power, so it's important to do as much research about the company and person interviewing for your job before the interview. This will help with answering their questions, and demonstrate that you're a good fit for this particular role. Researching on companies also demonstrates an attention to detail - something that employers appreciate in potential employees.
Use LinkedIn or Google, check out their sites. You can even reach out to existing or past employees (using LinkedIn search) to find out more to prepare you for the interview.
4) Find the right lighting
To ensure a good video interview experience, do sit in a place with good lighting to avoid distracting shadows on your face. You will also want to avoid areas with too much light, so you don't get a glare on your face.
5) Practice your Video Interview
Practice your video interview to make sure you can speak clearly and follow the company's guidelines. If possible, bring in a friend or family member with an iPad or laptop to help simulate the experience of an interview. This also helps to check that your speakers, mic, and cameras are working well so there are no surprises during the real interview.
6) Show up online a few minutes early
It's always best to show up online a few minutes early so this gives time for any technical difficulties to be resolved. Additionally, it shows respect for the hiring manager's time. Lateness is never a good thing and does not reflect too well on you.
7) Take turns to speak on video
Don't speak over or interrupt the interviewer. Also, be sure not to speak too much and to go on and on about your life story - recruiters do lose their focus after awhile too. Do pay attention to body language and try to maintain the eye contact through video.
8) Follow up with a Thank You email
Take a quick 5 minutes after your interview to send out a thank you email. This is an excellent way of showing your thankfulness and gratitude, and to leave a good impression on the interviewers.
9) Prepare any sample work to showcase online
If you have any samples of your work that can be shown in the interview, make sure to prepare this on another tab so you are able to share your screen and impress your interviewers.
10) Pay attention to body language
Make eye contact when appropriate; maintain good posture; don't slouch over your device screen!
11) Prepare questions ahead of time
Hiring managers love to end the interview by asking if you have any questions. Do come up with at least two questions so as not to seem like an uninterested candidate - you can ask more about the company culture, and why they enjoy what they do.
12) Show your personality
Be personable, be excited about what you can bring to the company and show that in your responses! Interviewers are looking for someone they would want to work with every day.
With the rise of remote work and given its convenience, video interviews are here to stay. With a little effort and preparation, it wouldn't be hard for you to ace your interview - Good Luck! :)