Make a good (video) impression
We are all video call pros at this point. However, it never hurts to get a quick reminder of the basics and to make sure you’ve earned your level up with our pro tips.
Close any windows, tabs or applications on your computer that you are not using
Have a copy of your resume and know who you are speaking with
Dress appropriately and wear professional pants…just in case
Situate yourself in a room with few distractions. Minimize the chance for cats to join the call or kids calling your name. If they do, don’t worry. See #2 below.
Check your room lighting, prop up your computer, test your sound, take a look at what shows up in the camera. Do this all in advance and to make sure it looks good.
Remember to look at the camera - not at the screen - to make eye contact. Video just doesn’t work like that.
“Avoid the instinct to look directly at your interviewer on the screen while you’re answering a question. Instead, when you speak, you want to direct your gaze at the webcam. When you do this, your eyes are more likely to align with the interviewer’s eyes on the other end. When you’re listening, you can look back at the screen.” - from Indeed
Candidate Pro Tips
At the beginning of the interview, ask for the phone number of the person you are speaking with. If there are any technical difficulties, call your interviewer at that number. Stay cool and either continue the interview by phone or reschedule and set a new date. Show your potential employer that you are ready for anything and that even a tech glitch won’t throw you off your game.
Be ready for any interruption – sirens, someone barging in the room, a pet cameo – politely ask for a minute, MUTE your mic, quickly address the problem – and continue.
Don’t let an unplanned surprise derail your interview. Show your interviewer that you can handle it with ease.
Employer/Hiring Manager Pro Tips
Test your technology. Considering you are hosting the interview, ensure you are familiar with the platform you’ve chosen and all technology is working. And make sure all pertinent information is sent to the candidate beforehand.
Understand that you and the candidate may not connect on the same level as you would have in person. Sometimes technology, especially when glitchy, makes it challenging to get a true sense of the other person’s character.
Ensure you’ve created a virtual waiting room to host your candidate. That way, if you become the victim of zoom bombing, the perpetrator will remain in the waiting room, unable to disrupt your call.
If something does go awry, this is also a great opportunity to get a sense of how the candidate handles challenging and stressful situations.
Bonus – our friends at Indeed shared some good last thoughts for both the interviewer and the interviewee:
Throughout the interview, keep your mood upbeat and convey optimism with your body language. One way to achieve this is to have good posture. Sit in your chair with your back straight and your shoulders open.
Position the camera so that you are looking up slightly and centered on the screen. [Editor notes: don’t be that guy with the camera looking up your nose]
Do you have any other suggestions? Share them with us.