If you’re job hunting right now, you'll need to be ready for video interviews. In some ways they're the same as face-to-face interviews (Be confident! Ask questions! Do your research!), but video interviews also have some extra things to consider so here are some tips to ace any interviews you have while on lockdown.
- Sort your technical set up - audio, video etc
- Give your internet some space - disconnect anything unnecessary and close those browser tabs!
- Choose a good location - lighting, background, remove distractions/pets (no matter how cute)
- Be ready to take notes - notebook/pen or tablet to hand
- Body language - sit up straight and make sure they can see your gestures
- Fidget out of frame
- Add extra pauses before and after answering to avoid talking over people with audio delay
- Things will go wrong! Deal with interruptions, connection issues etc calmly and get back on track as soon as you can
- Check notes and carry out any agreed follow up actions
Arguably the most important part of your video interview is how you prepare for it. Make sure your technical set up is strong and reliable, if your webcam goes down, there’s no video interview!
We asked Black Forest Games for a top tip and they have said to make sure you have good audio quality. Reliable audio is essential to a successful interview so test the whole set up but remember that should there be any video issues, audio calls will be the backup.
Also you should give your internet the best chance of staying up whilst you’re interviewing. You can do this by closing all unnecessary browser tabs, stopping any downloads or uploads, and asking anyone you live with to do the same. There’s nothing worse than a bad connection!
Prospects has loads of tips to help you prepare for a video interview, but one to highlight is to choose a suitable environment. Use a simple background in a quiet location, so that you are the focus. Ensure you don’t get cast in shadow by either sitting in natural light or placing a lamp in front of the camera.
Georgia, a recruiter from PUBG, says that you should remove all distractions, which means shutting your fur babies out for the duration of the interview, and having someone look after any kids that are around.
Make sure you dress appropriately for the role that you’re applying for. For example, many games studios have a casual dress code, so wearing a full suit and tie to the interview wouldn’t be hugely appropriate.
Finally, put your phone on silent and close anything on your computer that could play a notification sound. Ensure that you have a glass of water and notepad and pen so that you can take notes.
Now you’re all set up and ready to go!
During your interview, be aware of your body language. This means not slouching or hunching but sitting up straight. Although make sure you still look relaxed and natural, not stiff!
You should try to avoid fidgeting as it can be distracting and make you look nervous. If you feel the need to fidget to get through the interview, practice playing with a stress ball out of frame of the camera and discreetly so that the interviewer(s) won’t be able to tell, and you’ll be able to remain calm!
Making eye contact at an interview is really important and comes off really well. This is more difficult through a computer but can be done! Make sure you’re looking directly into the camera, rather than at your screen – this is the best eye contact you can get on a video call!
When speaking – avoid rushing through your answers, speak clearly and try not to interrupt your interviewer. These are all key to any kind of interview but are particularly important with the audio delays over the internet. Try to leave an extra beat between each person speaking so that you can either be sure they're finished, or let them know that you are!
Our top tip from PubG is to take notes during your interview. This can be something that's slightly less acceptable in a face-to-face interview so make the most of it!
Finally, don't let this video interview get in the way of showing your unique and wonderful personality. By showing them who you are you can give them the best chance to want to get you on board.
If something goes wrong
Indeed offers these tips of what to do if something unexpected happens during your video interview. If your video or audio stops working, call the interviewers back and ask if the interview can continue, or ask to reschedule if you can’t get your video back up and running.
If someone enters the room unexpectedly, apologise to your interviewers, mute your microphone and deal with the disturbance as quickly as possible.
If you do encounter any issues during the interview, don’t panic! Your interviewers are human too and will understand, dealing with it in a calm and efficient way might even reflect on you well and make them like you more!
When your interview is over, read over the notes you’ve made so that you’re clear on what was said and what the next steps are. Maybe spend some time reflecting on how it went for you as remember that this is a chance for you to decide what you think as well! Consider any questions you'd have for a potential second interview and note them down right away so you don't forget.
All that’s left then is to relax and congratulate yourself on a job well done!
Hopefully our tips have given you everything you need to be able to ace your video interview and land the new role you’re dreaming of.
Although this is a strange time for job hunters, there’s no reason why social distancing should stop you from starting a new role. Companies are adjusting to recruiting and onboarding staff remotely so, there’s no need to delay your job hunt!
Read more about what some of our clients are up to during the coronavirus outbreak in our blog - Coronavirus: changing the way we work
Working from home during social distancing? - Have a read of our WFH tips blog
Stuck at home with your kids? - Check out our How to Work From Home with Kids and Stay Sane blog
Stuck inside but feel the need to stretch your legs? - Read our Health & Wellbeing when Working from Home blog