Video interviewing can show how forward-thinking a company is, which leads to more companies bringing video interviewing into their job applications.
Video interviewing is becoming prominent in job applications. According to Jobbatical, 47% of the companies surveyed said that they use video interviewing in 2019(1).
More companies are using it now because of how efficient timewise it is for both the interviewer and the candidate. Another video interviewing statistics suggests that “98% of candidates interviewed via video said the employer was innovative(2).”
Especially if candidates make it past the first selection round, video interviews can be a replacement for meeting face-to-face. If you’re interviewing for a position out of state or even one that is a few hours away, companies are more willing to meet you over a video to put a face to a name rather than a phone call.
But how can you master your next video interview? Here are some video interviewing tips to help:
Effective Tips for Video Interviewing
Set-Up, Equipment, and Preparation:
- Find a quiet and well-lit area
This is important because you want your video interview to feel like a face-to-face meeting. You don’t need music in the background, dogs barking, or children playing, because that would distract you. Loud places, in general, won’t only disturb you, but they’ll also distract the interviewer as well.
They also need to see you well, so don’t sit in a dark room. Make sure the lighting doesn’t cast any shadows on you. Also, you don’t want someone to come in and interrupt the interview, so having a private space helps. Treat this interview as a professional face-to-face. Finding a quiet, private place for you concentrate that is also well-lit is essential.
- Test the technology before starting
If your technology crashes or messes up during an interview, it could be seen as being unprepared on your part. Test everything beforehand. Does the sound work well? Is the lighting good enough to see yourself well? Is the video quality good?
Having a technology crash, in the beginning, can put the interview off to a bad start.
- Ensure devices are charged ahead of time
Of everything, you don’t want your technology to die in the middle of the interview. About an hour beforehand, start charging your laptop or phone. Most interviews do not last over fifteen to thirty minutes, so having about an hour’s worth of charge should cover you.
- Dress for success
Just like an interview in person, you want to dress for success. Always look the most professional you can. There’s no such thing as being ‘too professional’ when it comes to an interview. Showing that you care enough to dress to impress them, puts you at a good spot from the beginning.
During the Video Interview:
- Frame yourself from the chest up
During the interview, the interviewer should only see you from about your chest up. You don’t want to be so far away from the camera that the interviewer cannot see you clearly. But you also don’t want to be so up close that the interviewer can see every little detail on your face.
- Speak clearly and slowly
After all the preparation, you don’t want the interviewer to have a hard time understanding you. Make sure you don’t speak too fast since the interviewer is taking notes on what you say. Also, make sure you speak clearly.
- No googling while talking
During the interview, you shouldn’t be looking up answers. That doesn’t put you in a good spot with the interviewer. Instead, take the day before or two to research the company. What kinds of questions are asked during the interview? What is the company’s mission statement? What is the environment like there? What is the company known for? But once the interview starts, the googling stops.
- Have a pen, notepad, and a copy of your resume on your desk
Having these three things prepared helps you immensely. A pen and notepad allow you to take notes in case you want to remember something that the interview said. Perhaps the interviewer told you something about the company that you want to remember or outlines the rest of the interview process with you. You want to be able to write that information down before you forget it. Telling the interviewer to hold on as you scramble to find a notepad and pen can seem unprofessional.
Also, the interviewer will most likely be reading off your resume during the entire interview. It’s good to be on the same track and go over the information with them while your resume is also in front of you. That way, if they have a question, you know exactly what they’re talking about.
- Use hand gestures when it’s appropriate
During an interview, having your hands fly around everywhere could be distracting. Try to limit your hand gestures only when you feel like you have to.
- Maintain good eye contact and body language
If you look distracted or that you don’t want to be there, that may give the wrong impression to the interviewer. Make good eye contact the whole time, so the interviewer knows that you’re paying attention to everything they have to say. Having a relaxed body language and smiling helps as well.
- Pause and project
Project your voice, so the interviewer doesn’t have to turn up the volume or strain to try to hear you. Remember to speak clearly too, so the microphone captures your voice well. Anything you can do to make sure the interviewer can hear you well is key.
Before you answer any question though, pause for a moment. This may seem nerve-racking and unnecessary but taking a pause after questions can show that you’re thinking about your answer. It also could boost your confidence since you’ll know that you answered the question the best you could rather than blurting out an answer as soon as the question is asked.
Things to Avoid Doing:
- Don’t fidget
Moving around a lot during the interview can be distracting. Fidgeting can also make you seem nervous or anxious. During an interview, you always want to look the calmest and attentive as you can be.
- Having your phone’s ringer on
You don’t want your phone to randomly go off during the interview. That could be distracting and seem as unprofessional. Always put your phone on silent before the interview starts.
- Close the video interview without saying thank you
Sharing your appreciation is best suited for after the interview. Send a quick thank you note, thanking them for taking the time to interview you. I would recommend doing this within 24 hours. A quick thank you note is rare and can go a long way.
- Read off your pre-answered questions
This may seem useful because you’ll have the answers right there in front of you, but this brings up more issues than one. You’ll lose eye contact with the interviewer and seem distracted. It might take you a while to find the answer you were looking for. What if you wanted to tweak your answer at the last moment? What if the question asked is not on your list but you want to check anyway?
You’ll also seem like you rehearsed a script for the interview instead of sounding more natural. You want the interview to be as fluid as possible. Practice questions beforehand, but don’t leave any notes around your computer to get distracted by.
Best Video Interviewing Platforms
Different jobs will interview you on different platforms. Some of these platforms will have a live interview while others will have a pre-recorded interview.
A live interview is similar to a normal face-to-face interview except a screen will be between you and the interviewer. It could even be as simple as a Skype call or through Zoom.
But a pre-recorded interview is less personal. You’ll be presented with pre-recorded questions from the interviewer. You’ll record your answers in video form. Usually, there is a time limit to answer them as well. This helps interviewers go through lots of candidates when they have more time rather than trying to find the time to sit down for a full interview.
It’s vital for you to know which one you will be getting beforehand. You don’t want to prepare for a live interview and end up facing a pre-recorded one.
Here’s a list of some of the most used and best interviewing platforms out there. If you have an interview on one, research it more before the interview.
- HireVue is an interviewing platform that over 700 companies use. It flexible since it can be used to interview candidates from any device as long as you have Internet Its platform puts an assessment and interview all in one step.
- Interactly allows interviewers to create any amount of pre-recorded questions they want and invite candidates to answer. Candidates answer in video form. Interviewers can review and share the answers with other coworkers.
- InterviewStream can support up to 20 people on one video call. It also gives lessons to candidates, so they can practice their video interviewing.
- MyInterview is used as a widget in an existing That means that candidates interview over the company’s website in a video form.
- Refrek is a Software as a Service (SaaS) interviewing platform that has an immense collection of preloaded interview questions that the interviewer can pick from. They can also choose answers to be in a video, audio, text, or multiple-choice.
- Spark Hire caters interviewers from huge, established companies and smaller companies alike. It also offers the interviewers some analytic tools to track everything in the interview process. Over 5,000 companies use this video interview.
- VidCruiter has a more relaxed interview platform that gives interviewers the option to allow candidates to rerecord answers. However, if the interviewer wants to give candidates a time limit to complete all the questions, they can do that as.
Video Interviewing Challenges for Applicants
There can be some video interviewing challenges even after you have prepared everything sometimes:
- The interviewer doesn’t have the best Internet connection, so a part of the interview is glitchy.
- It could also be poor video quality where the audio is delayed.
But some challenges could be out of your control. For example, there could be constructed across the street. Or a family member or roommate could come back early and accidentally go into the room where you’re having the interview.
If one of these challenges comes across, it’s important to stay calm. If you freak out, you may seem disorganized, and that could be a red flag. There are a few options of what you can do.
If you’re worried about technology not working, ask the interviewer if they have a phone number or email address to reach them if technical difficulties do arise. Do this before the interview though. If there’s construction or some other unexpected loud noise, you could move to a place farther away or ask to reschedule. If someone enters your room uninvited, apologize to the interviewer, mute your mic, and take care of the situation before getting back to the interview as quickly as possible.
Video interviewing is becoming more common as our world advances. With the job searching getting harder each year, it’s important to learn the skills necessary to overcome any video interviewing challenges you may have. The easier the interview is for the interviewer, the better you’ll stand out as a better candidate.