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Lights, Camera, Action: How to ace a video interview

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Without the typical face-to-face interaction, showing your personality can be a challenge. Nowadays, many companies use video interviews to expedite the hiring process. In the digital era, more and more businesses will implement video interviews, so make sure you are ready (and get good at smiling). There are specific ways to ace a video interview. Here’s how. 

Dress professionally

You might be in the comfort of your own home for a video interview, but that doesn’t mean you can abandon the appropriate dress. You want to dress exactly as if you were being interviewed in person. What you wear can have an impact on your mindset. If you’re too comfortable in your jeans and t-shirt, that may come through in your attitude and the way you speak. You want to put forward the impression that you’re taking the video interview seriously.

It’s important your attire matches the company for which you’re interviewing. If you’re doing an interview for an architecture job, you may have more freedom since architecture is a creative field. While you may be able to forgo the suit, you should still dress professionally in a clean outfit that fits well.

Create the right lighting and background

Pay attention to the lighting and background. You want your environment to be well-lit and free from distractions like a dog barking or a blaring TV. You want the focus to be on you and what you’re saying. Also, when you do your interview, remove any posters or paintings. The backdrop should be clear and business-like. Paul J. Bailo, a digital executive and author of The Essential Digital Interview Handbook has said, “You want a clean, sterile environment when you’re doing a video interview.” Make sure the lights aren’t casting any shadows on your face. Above all, if the interviewer can’t see you properly or is distracted by noise, you’ll diminish your chances of landing the job.

Keep your body language open

Be mindful of your body language during the interview. Just as with an in-person interview, sit with a proper posture. It’s fine to gesture when you speak but keep your hand movements within the frame. Even if the interviewer can’t see your foot tapping under the table, try your best to avoid fidgeting. Also, don’t cross your arms or adopt rigid body language. You want to appear professional and confident. No matter how nervous you are, try your best to act natural and maintain eye contact with the employer.

Have a good handle on the technology

When it comes to video interviews, technical difficulties can happen and it might not be your fault. But you need to get a handle on the basics. For example, make sure everything on your laptop is working properly. Double check the audio, video, and internet connection. Make sure your device is fully charged and plugged in on the day. You don’t want your laptop cutting out halfway through the interview. Mayer Dahan, an LA real estate developer described her experience with a poor interview. She said, “I know technical glitches are bound to happen, but the fact her computer didn’t have adequate battery power for the interview made me feel she was unprepared.” To avoid the headache of technological issues, do thorough checks for a seamless interview.

Get on-camera practice

In the days before the video interview, get some on-camera practice. Use your webcam to record yourself answering questions and see how your facial expressions, voice, and body language comes across on camera. You’ll be able to review yourself and make sure the background and lighting are okay. You could even show the recording to a friend or a family member to get their opinion. The more you get comfortable with talking about yourself on camera, the better you’ll perform in the interview.

Video interviews are on the rise. The good news is it means you don’t have to travel. Unfortunately, being on camera doesn’t come naturally to everyone, so it comes with its pitfalls. To succeed in a video interview, you’re going to have to brush up on your presentation and ensure you come across as a complete professional.

Job hunting can be full of uncertainty. But with us, you can be sure that we’ll do everything we can to get you to your ideal job. Send your CV to us to get started or search for the latest job vacancies and we’ll get the ball rolling.