Online Interview through software are now commonly used for interviews and with downloads for Zoom scaling to more than 250,000 per month, here are eight secrets to nailing a Skype or Zoom video interview and land the job. The world is set for a surge in the unemployment rate, all thanks to the Coronavirus Pandemic.
With a large number of people losing their jobs as companies crumble under the pressure of the Pandemic lockdown, there is likely to be a steep rise in people looking for a new role.
The world is set to hit an unemployment rate of 10 percent in the second quarter of the year 2020. The stringent measures are imposed by health experts and the government to prevent us from networking and close face-to-face interactions. But this should not prevent you from job hunting and going for jobinterview.
To be online interviewed over the likes of Zoom and Skype is becoming the norm as recruiters look for the best candidates.
It is because there is an increasing requirement of employers willing to have online interviews through video conferencing technology like Zoom and Skype. These meeting tools make it possible to apply for jobs, network and attend meetings – remotely from your homes. But how do you attend a successful interview through video, if you have never attempted it before and not too much comfortable in front of the camera?
The bedroom is not the ideal stage for a job interview. You have to get dressed in the same way you would get dressed up for a face-to-face meeting. The bedroom is not an acceptable background. Imagine what is it going to cost?
The only good news is that most video conferencing software is free of cost available through recruitment websites like Totaljobs. They generally offer a free version too as part of their initiatives to give back, keep the economy going, and create jobs.
It is unlikely, then, that you’ll get charged for the use of this type of software. But it is always good to read the terms and conditions of the chosen meeting tool before using it. Online interviews are just like regular interviews. They can be mastered only when you know how to prepare for it.
Let’s get into some top tips on how to look and conduct yourself professionally from home.
1. Make sure to be camera-ready
Prepping for a Online Interview should be similar to prepping for a face-to-face meeting. It has some added steps when it comes to the setting of the conversation.
Earlier, it was the employer who has to worry about ensuring, for an Online Interview, an appropriate friendly place for the interviewer and the candidate. While being interviewed at home, the onus is now on the interviewee to create the best possible setting. Some areas in the home offer a better backdrop than others. Since the world went into lockdown, there’s been a spike in the numbers of individuals and companies using video conferencing tools like Zoom.
There is always caution against interviewing in your bedroom. Space around the house is a premium position. But still, being interviewed during a lockdown, it’s always a mistake to do it in a bedroom. It would be a highly personal and intimate space, even if the bed made expertly. If the bedroom is the only option available, make sure cameras are focussed, leaving all beds, clothes, cosmetic tables, away from family pictures. Another cardinal sin done on a video call is sitting with your back against a bright window, which makes the interviewer not able to see you.
Don’t speak to your future employer lying in a bed.
2. Be familiar with the technology
Before you enter an interview, it’s vital to become familiar with your recruiter’s or your chosen video communications and meeting tool.
The most common types of video software for online meetings are Skype. But, nowadays, Zoom is becoming increasingly popular lately. Downloads of the software Zoom have spiked since the coronavirus outbreak to over 250,000 by the end of February. Make sure you know how the tech works.
How many times have you had to Skype into work, and there’s some sort of glitch, or the router is down, or Skype itself needs to be updated? First impressions are still important, although you are online meeting a person. Make sure it’s all working and functioning well and that the camera is at the right angle.
3. Check your video environment
Impressions do count. While your home collection of Avengers may be a conversation starter among friends, it may not impress your future employer. Do check your space in the background of your video footage. Don’t interview with your bar or barbeque in the environment. Check there’s nothing inappropriate in the bookshelves or between your books or DVDs. But do have some interesting, articulate things in the background that may create a good impression of yours. If you’re a big rugby fan, for instance, put your favorite team shirt within view.
4. Make plans, so you’re not interrupted
Some interviews get famous for the children gatecrashing a BBC interview than for what the actual person was saying in the clip that went viral.
His wife had to interrupt the conversation. You may have to take the children out of the workspace. So as not to add to the hilarious situation into your interview. So, plan well, plan. Employers, although, are aware that families are stuck together in isolation, and children are being homeschooled and are kept busy at home, but still try to prevent any interruptions where possible. You are controlling your environment, so it’s vital to get things right. Switch off your mobile phone.
With kids barging in the middle of the interview all the time, the interviewer may feel funny, but they may not be impressed by the fact that you can’t control your environment. In most cases, people will be understanding, and you may be fine. But it may be a small difference between you and another candidate.
5. Dress appropriately
It’s been several weeks of the lockdown measures that have been put in place. You may be feeling completely comfortable walking around in your casual-wear during the day or even in your pajamas. But the ever-increasing relaxed approach may not sit well with your future employer. It is better to have no pajama bottoms. It is vital to understand how the video conferencing tech works and that the camera is at the right angle. Also, don’t’ be tempted to just dress formally from the waist up because if you have to leap up and push a child out the door suddenly, it may all go wrong.
It would be recommended to smart casual in most cases at the moment. It would seem silly to be suited and booted. So, don’t go too far. But you also don’t want to look like you’re living in a post-apocalyptic environment.
6. Make use of sticky notes
With kids getting into the workplace in the middle of an Online Interview, the interviewer sometimes finds it funny. It also gives an impression to them, and they may not be impressed by the fact that you can’t control your environment…it may be a small difference between you and the other candidate. Having an interview in the comfort of your own home brings about a few advantages, one of which is a styling environment to ensure you get your points across in the meeting. A few well-placed notes could help trigger the mind. But don’t go too far – restrict only to a few key points to remind you. Even in a healthy live interview, do tell take a copy of your CV to refer to. Having a Bio-Data in front of you does still look professional.
But don’t look like you are reading. Don’t have a script, instead have a cheat sheet. You don’t want to look like you are overly rehearsed and narrating like a parrot.
7. Stand, don’t sit
Sitting may be considered comfortable, but there’s always the danger in sitting position is that it creates too much comfort, making you slouch, and coming across as effortless. It is suggested to stand up instead. This requires having a standing desk or placing your screen or camera on a stand. This is especially very useful in case you are making a presentation. For many of the job interviews, it may be more ideal to stand than to sit.
8. Practice makes perfect
If you’re unfamiliar with conducting yourself over the video, then it’s vital to practice to ensure you come across professionally. Try to engage with the camera of the computer. This is not hard to do, assume lens to be your friend. Engage, smile, and practice to the camera. Practice with a friend and do it live with a friend on a chat. You probably have plenty of friends who do not have much to do right now and would be happy to help.
Work from Home
Workplaces are evolving as the companies are now adopting everchanging forms of IT technology to access the best workers and trying to retain talent who can only work from their home. The camera does feel intimidating now, but there are plenty of advantages to being interviewed virtually.
Some candidates feel more relaxed and confident through the use of video calls as they can participate in the Online Interview from the comfort of home, avoiding the stresses of travel and the possibility of running late. Conducting a job Online Interview through a video call is undoubtedly getting more challenging than a face to physical face interview because the majority of us simply aren’t used to doing it.