Online Job Interviews: Great Hacks

Wise and Wealthy Woman newsletter

In the past few weeks, I have completed a number of recruitment briefs for clients and interestingly the entire recruitment and on-boarding of all the briefs were done 100% online. There’s no way around it: Online Interviews via video conferencing software has become the new normal and dear #jobseeker, you need to prepare appropriately for these to improve your chances of success. Here are a few tips on how you can prepare for these sessions:

  1. Verify interview details: Check the information you received from the employer to make sure you know what platform will be used for the interview, how to access the platform(the common ones are Zoom, Microsoft teams, Google meet, and Skype), who is expected to initiate the video conference and whether video will be used as opposed to just audio.
  2. Standard rules still apply: You need to prepare for the online interview as you would an in-person interview.
  3. Familiarise yourself with the company and the job role you are being interviewed for
  4. Be ready to justify everything on your CV
  5. Dress appropriately for the interview (yes, they may not see most part of your dressing, but it does have a psychological effect on you and your performance)
  6. Research and practice common interview questions
  7. Control the interview environment:
  8. Device: It is advisable you use a laptop/desktop with a good camera. You can also purchase an external webcam is the one that comes with your device is not good enough. Test your mic and speaker settings, its preferable you use headphones. The ones that come with your phone work just fine.
  9. Interview Space: Make the interview space as professional as possible free of any visual or physical distractions. The less items you have in the background, the better. Use a backdrop where possible or use a virtual background if the platform provides for such.
  10. Lightning: Good lightning impacts significantly on your interview success so make sure the environment is well illuminated (I prefer allowing natural light in or using a light ring). Ensure there is no light behind you and Position two lights, if possible, at a diagonal in front of you, one a bit to your right and one a bit to your left.
  11. Power-up: Make sure your device is well charged to avoid any issues and sufficient provisions for any power outages.
  12. Backup:Sometimes technology does fail, so have a planned backup for your device and internet access.
  13. 4.   Practice with a friend and record it: Do a practice session using the same platform as stated by the recruiter, record and review the session. By going over your recording you can optimize a lot in your interview performance:
  1. How is the lighting?
  2. Are you fidgeting too much or  not smiling enough?
  3. How is your eye-line?
  4. Is the audio and video quality good?
  5. What message is your body language conveying?
  1. Interview day preps
  2. Sleep well: a good night rest will do you a world of good
  3. Turn off notifications and if possible clear all tabs on your device to avoid distractions
  4. Keep kids and pets away
  5. All platforms will require you to input your name when logging in, please make sure you input your name (first name and last name preferably)
  6. Be on time, but not too early: Sometimes,interviewers may use the same “meeting room” or link for multiple job seekers. So you may be entering a “room” that was being used to talk to another job seeker before I recommend logging in for your interview 2-3 minutes before the scheduled time, but no sooner.

If you follow the tips above, you’ll feel more confident and relaxed in your online interview and increase your chances of getting the job.

At the end of the day, it’s just like any interview. You need to give great answers. You should ask great questions, too. Just make sure you’re comfortable with the technology before going into the conversation so that you can focus on the conversations.

Cheers to your success

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