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12 things to keep in mind while preparing for video interviews

by Aripriya Basu May 8, 2020
12 things to keep in mind while preparing for video interviews

A lot of things are anticipated to change in the days to come, and the process of interviewing is one of them. Video interviews are going to be quite popular in the future and the roots of the same have started to form already.

A video interview is quite lucrative as it involves no need to travel, is quite time-saving, and will be a practical option in a world dominated by #socialdistancing. 60 percent of hiring managers and recruiters are currently using video interviewing to reduce the hiring timeframe. A survey involving 506 companies showed that 47 percent are using video interviewing and 22 percent are considering making the shift.

Since the numbers speak for themselves, it’s time for you to imbibe a few best practices to ace a video interview. You need to rise above tips like what to wear and ideal lighting and focus on how to eschew the awkwardness and stiffness during a video interview. Some concrete tips will help you prepare well in advance as video interviews will be an essential part of the hiring mechanism in the days to follow.

Do not read from a paper

Though in a lot of ways a video interview is different from a face-to-face interview, they share quite a few similarities. For instance, the interviewer will check your level of confidence and presence of mind. Thus do not read out from a piece of paper. Even if you arrange the camera to hide your notes, your tone will give you out. Of course, you can refer to your notes if you lose track of your thoughts but do not bank on them completely.

Rehearse and practice

Video interviews have become popular since they cut down on the time frame. Generally, video interviews are quite structured. The questions pertain to the industry or the jobs you are applying for. To make things easy and cut down on the awkwardness, practice on a mock interview to get in the flow. This will help you get rid of the initial awkwardness.

Takedown inappropriate usernames

Can you imagine hiring “rockyalwaysthereforyou” as a project lead or lead developer? Well, if you can’t, how can the recruiter or the HR interviewing you? It’s possible that you had set up your personal email id as a youngster like many of us. We are all embarrassed by these early-made email addresses. But make sure you don’t use them for your official interview. Create a new one if the situation so calls for and make sure it’s professional.

Tech setup

Though it’s quite obvious, many times people forget to check connectivity before having an interview call. In other times they do not get the network required to have a smooth interview, Thus as a rule of thumb, before appearing for the interview ensure that you have enough charge in your device and a stable internet connection. You do not want the screen to split or pixelate while you are in the middle of an interview answering an important question.

Plan B

Gadgets can be unpredictable at times. Even though you might have a strong connection and a fully charged device, some other technical glitch might occur killing your chance at a smooth interview. It’s important to prepare for such unforeseen situations beforehand. Have another phone or system ready to continue the interview there or in the worst-case scenario, take your interviewer’s phone number so that you can continue the rest of the interview in spite of the glitch.

Act calm

Since it’s an interview, it’s important to behave and act normal. Many a time people stare into the camera or scream in the microphone. This happens when people are unfamiliar with the device they are using. Thus it’s important to have a practice run with the devices before your scheduled interview.

Non-verbal communication

Since it’s not a face-to-face interview, non-verbal communication cues become as crucial as ever. In that light, do not avoid eye-contact with your interviewer. Additionally don’t be too stiff. Use your hand gestures to express yourself but do not go overboard with it.

Keep it noiseless

Though it’s not a face-to-face interview, a video interview is no less than that. Thus having a mixer grinder running in the background, or the television playing at a distance is a strict no-no. Ideally, you should find a quiet spot in your house devoid of any distraction so that you can hear the interviewer and vice versa. Additionally, turn off your phone and deactivate all the alarms in it. You don’t want it to start humming a chirpy bird song while you are in the middle of the interview.

No-people policy

While talking about avoiding noise, avoiding people during the video interview is also essential. Even if they remain quiet, any third person in the room can distract you during the interview, they can also distract the interviewer and that is not an ideal scenario. Thus while appearing for a video interview make sure you are alone in the room with no chance of interruption. In that light, you should get rid of anything or anyone that can be a potential cause of your concentration loss. This applies to pets too. Even though your dog might just lie on the bed and sleep, the moment he decides to stir up and start barking your concentration goes outside the window.

Arrive early

For a face-to-face interview, it’s courteous to arrive at least 10 minutes early. The same applies to a video interview. However, this has to do more than being courteous. For instance, if the company you are interviewing with uses a particular video platform you are not familiar with. You have to download the application and understand its features. Additionally, it’s always a good idea to run a final check on the gadgets and tech before the interview starts. All this takes some time, so begin it early.

Make yourself understood

Video interviews have their own set of challenges. For instance, many a time it takes a while before your interviewer can hear your voice. Even after taking all the necessary measures to ensure that the gadgets are working properly, there might be some disturbance in the connection. Even though you might not be able to do anything about it, play your part. Talk slowly and be sure to enunciate your words. All this will make sure that your interviewer can hear you properly.

Listening carefully

This is crucial. During the video interview make sure to focus your full attention on what the interviewer is saying and stop your mind from drifting away. Understand the questions asked, take a brief time to mull over them, and then come back with your reply. It’s very common to cut someone off during a video interview due to audio delays or lack of attention to nonverbal cues. However, doing this is very rude and must be avoided. However, to do that, listen carefully to what the interviewer is saying, take a brief pause and reply.

This is the ideal time to prepare for the future. So, imbibe these best practices as they will be prevalent in the days to come. Video interviews are going to open up more job opportunities in the days to come. Thus working on all the quirks from the start can prove to be effective.