When applying for a graduate scheme with a major employer, the probability of facing a video interview as part of the recruitment process is very likely.
When there are a large number of candidates for the job role, companies usually use video interviews to filter out a suitable candidate. They can vary in style and length. It saves money and time to both the candidate and the company. And now more and more companies are using video interviews at some stage in the hiring process.
The Interview Format
It’s important that you know in advance what format the video interview, as the two types are has different experiences.
Live – This format is very straightforward and similar to a regular face-2-face interview. The interview takes place in a traditional way except you are not in the same room and communicate with each other through video conference using software like Skype google hangout etc. Basically, employers can create a traditional interview format without requiring the candidate to travel to their office, meaning they can recruit from around the world.
Pre-recorded/ Video Questions – This format has less personal experience. Here candidates are given a website link by the employers which opens a portal where the candidates have to record answers to pre-selected/pre-recorded interview questions with a set amount of time for each answer and get 1-2 tries before submitting. This usually helps employers who have lots of candidates, as they can easily take their suitable time to watch their answers and select the qualified candidates.
Prepare for the Interview
Now that you know the format of the interview. Let’s go in detail about some few hacks on how to get the video interview right.
Choosing your Location
Be smart and choose the location wisely when you’re about to do an interview. Look for a quiet place where you won’t be bothered by noises and people. Make sure your location is tidy and has a clean and simple background so that the recruiter focuses on you.
Have a lamp about 2.5 – 3.5 feet on either side of you at least the same height as the webcam (or a little higher) or use natural light. It is really important to have a good lightening as it won’t be great if you can’t be seen properly.
Close any software in your desktop or laptop that play notification sounds and switch your mobile phone off or put it in silent mode to avoid distraction. If you have a family or live with people let everyone know that you’re about to start the interview so they don’t interrupt.
You may be at home but it’s still a job interview, so try to impress your employers by not only being professional but also dressing appropriately. Wear the same outfit that you would’ve worn if it was a face-to-face interview. Try wearing plain clothes and avoid wearing patterns and stripes.
Use Positive Body Language
Maintain good eye contact which means keep your eye at the camera. There is a fine line between good eye contact and the serial killer stare. Instead smile, listen and take an interest in what they are saying. To do this make sure you set up the camera at eye level and eye your eyes on the camera rather than the screen. Avoid slouching moving too much or touching your face.
For pre-recorded interviews, try to imagine you’re speaking to a real person, maintaining your positive body language and charisma.
Do a test run of your computer, camera and any software you’ve been asked to use. Check whether the sound quality is good and if the picture is clear. Also, don’t forget to check your internet connection.
Sort all everything beforehand, keep your chargers, headphones and everything in place so that you don’t have to sort things when your interview starts. Keep your laptop charged and switch everything on before 30 mins of the interview.
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