Tips for the Video Interview:
Today, video conferencing is often viewed as a convenient method for conducting an interview with prospective job candidates. This rings especially true with the initial screening interview where prospective employers often choose this method over the more traditional in-person or phone interview.
The following tips are critical when preparing for a video interview:
- Dress Code is #1
- Keep the look ‘formal’ from top to bottom. This means not only wearing the dress shirt or blouse, but also the pants or skirt (just in case the camera picks up more than your head and shoulders).
- Keep the Background Clean & Simple
- Be sure you set your laptop up in front of a bare wall without photos, pictures, mirrors, etc. The focus should be on YOU and not other distractions the camera may pick up.
- Speak a Little Slower
- Talking a little slower during a video conference typically exudes more confidence. Take a breath and don’t be afraid of a pause.
- Quiet PLEASE
- Be sure that all pets, kids and so on are far from earshot. Microphones can easily pick up unwanted background noises.
- Posture, Hand Movement, Facial Expressions
- All movements may appear exaggerated when viewing a video. Keep smiling, maintain a good posture by sitting up straight, and be sure that hand movement is kept within moderation.
- Standard Interview Prep and Techniques Apply
- As with any interview – whether in-person or by phone – you need to be prepared. There’s a lot of information out there via the internet, books, etc on how to best prepare for any interview, regardless of how it’s conducted. I’ve written a few blogs as well to help you prepare including “Interview Tips – Beyond the Basics”.
If you’re looking for a new job in 2017 here are a few trends to keep in mind:
It’s an Employee’s Market
The Blended Workforce Gains Strength
Technology and the Application Process
Most professionals know or are at least aware of the interview basics – ie. Dress professionally, be on time, exude confidence, research the company, ask questions, and so on…
Here are a few more items that shouldn’t be left off your list when preparing for a job interview:
Know your Audience
- You should not only the name(s) of the person you will be interviewing with, but also their title and hopefully some background on their career. For example, how long have they worked in this position? Have they held other titles at this same company? Where else have they worked? Searching online professional networks such as “Linked In” may give you some important insights into their expertise and in turn, the types of questions they may ask.
Remember to Close the (Deal) Interview
- There are many approaches to this, but all too often interviewees forget to take any. The best advice here is to keep it simple, to the point and be sure it includes the “enthusiasm” ingredient. The following is an example of a solid closing statement:
- “This opportunity sounds like an exciting challenge – just what I’ve been looking for. I believe my …(list your strengths) make me the right candidate for this job. What will the next step in the hiring process be?”
- I’m always amazed at this all too common blunder among interviewees. Following up after your interview with a “thank you” correspondence is still very important in the job seeking process. Contrary to some interviewee’s beliefs in this fast-paced electronic world we live in… you should still send out a thank you to all interviewers either via email or snail mail. Be sure to collect their business cards so that you have their contact information handy. Even if working through a recruiter this step should not be left out. Depending on how quick the hiring process appears to be going you may want to consider “cutting through the clutter” and sending a written thank you note to each of your interviewers. Be sure to keep it short, show your enthusiasm and include one sentence on why you are the perfect candidate.
Format is King
Be sure to use the format that works best with your work experience. Most people use a chronological format, but that may not be the ideal format for you if, for example, you’re a freelancer who has had many assignments over the last several years or so.
Those Important “Key Words”
If a resumé is scanned electronically by an employer the scanner will pick up key words applicable to a job posting resulting in a greater potential for a match. Be sure to include those key words you are wanting to match to. We also recommend a listing of core competencies (under an applicable header) towards the top of the resumé which can double as key words and provide the reader with a quick snap shot of your overall skills.
Too often we see resumés that list out all of the job seeker’s responsibilities under each job. But, what about accomplishments? Your accomplishments say a lot about your contributions in a given work place and provide a potential employer with greater insights into why they should hire you.
What NOT to include
No need to include your hobbies, references or graduation dates (unless you’re a relatively recent grad). Adding these items gives your resumé a “dated” look and feel. It’s assumed that references will be provided if and when needed.
Keep it Concise
Of course you don’t want to leave out critical accomplishments, but be sure to emphasize the last 10 years of your career and keep the other job information very brief – UNLESS you are making a career change whereby the previous years’ experience is more relative. In this case you should also consider a non-chronological format.