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Video Interview? Ace It

Posted by Jeff Pelliccio on Nov 30, 2017 9:00:00 AM

In ICS insights

You'd be surprised how many people don't wear pants to a video interview. Big mistake. HUGE. Besides proper attire, many things can go wrong during a video interview. These kinds of meetings are becoming more common for employers, and it benefits both employer and employee when it comes to travel, but most of the work is on you. Your interview will be a production if done right. Lighting, camera, and the set will come into play, and if you haven't thought that far into the interview, you need to read on to find out what else you're forgetting.

The Video Killed the Phone Interview Superstar

Long gone are the days where saying the right thing is the only thing that matters. It's a lot more complex than your response. It's how you deliver your answer. Here are some tips to get you ready for your next video interview:

Location Scout

Location truly is everything. There are plenty of concerns when it comes to choosing a spot for a video interview. Think about the lighting, background noise, foot traffic, what's behind you, mirrors, interruptions, and plenty more. Take everything into consideration. You can't go wrong with a blank wall or bookshelf behind you. Above all, just make sure there is nothing negative on your side of the screen. 

Make Sure You Have The Right Hardware

Before the interview, please make sure you have access to a video camera. That could be built into your laptop, attached to your desktop, or you could use a tablet or smartphone. If this is a detail oriented position and you forgot the camera aspect of the interview, it won't fare well for you. While most have access to this kind of hardware, not all do so borrow a friend's or a family member's camera. Make sure it's available on the day of your interview. This may be an obvious tip, but it's the most crucial. 

Update Your Computer

While the hardware is essential, the software comes close behind. Ensure a smooth interview by updating your software on your computer and picking a friendly user interface like Skype. If your interviewer insists on using a company platform to do the interview, make sure your computer is compatible and ready for the scheduled time. Many times a flash player update is needed, or even an operating system upgrade. Address it now instead of the day of where things can go wrong. 

Testing, 123

On the same note, make sure your video device and network connections are all working the day before the interview. There's always an allowance for technical difficulties, but make sure you can limit them as much as possible beforehand. This will reduce your stress and ensure a smoother interview experience. You could even do a second test the morning of if you have the time. It will give you that peace of mind you'll need. 

Do A Run Through

Practice makes permanent! When you do a run through of your interview, record it and play it back to find any errors on your part or the camera. If you keep practicing without improving, all you're doing is further engraining bad habits into your brain. The only way to do this is to have a benchmark to look back on, hence the recording. Set up a list of questions you think you'll be asked and practice answering them. While you don't want to repeat them like a robot spitting out a script, you should practice them until they feel familiar. As for the camera, keep it at eye level and make sure you look into the camera. Your interviewer's eyes are the camera lens. When it comes to framing, keep it locked in from the chest up, so you aren't a floating head. Don't treat this as a FaceTime chat with a friend. Imagine the interviewer is sitting right in front of you. 

Dress For The Position You Want

Don't show up in last nights clothes or your pajamas. You should dress for the job, not the environment. Plan your outfit as if you were going to the office for the interview. Just remember to avoid anything that won't look good on a screen like whites, plaids, or loud colors. Even more important is to complete the outfit on the bottom. Wear dress pants or a skirt even if you don't have them in the frame. It's not unheard of for employers to ask you to stand up during an interview to make sure you are in fact wearing some form of attire. Better to be prepared for that than not. 

Study Body Language

Take the time to read articles on positive body language. Your body language could be saying something totally different than what is coming out of your mouth. Don't say your open to something and cross your arms while saying it. You want to come across as friendly, relaxed, and confident. Avoid slouching and looking anywhere other than the camera. You may even want to lean in to give the impression that you are fully invested in the conversation. Your body can betray you in 100 different ways. It's best you know how now as opposed to after the interview. 

Get Rid of All Distractions

No one wants to hear constant dings on your devices while the interview is in progress. Turn off all of your devices and alerts on the device your using for the interview. Shut down all apps that aren't essential to the interview. Keep in mind that distractions can also come from outside sources like family members, roommates, construction, or deliveries. Limit these by informing all of the above that you'll be doing an e-interview at your specific time. They should respect your request for no interruptions. Reschedule deliveries and invest in soundproof padding if completely necessary. There's usually a workaround for any distraction. 

Get Ready to Take The Next Step

In the end, you will be better prepared and have a higher chance of moving on to the next steps in the process. This will prepare you for an in-person interview, allowing you to make an easier transition into the next stage. Any tough questions that didn't get asked in this interview may still be asked in the next one so do not forget to brush up on your responses. If you're still looking for employment, apply to one of our jobs to get started. We have all the connections you need to find the right job for you.

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