I have scanned thousands of CVs and have found one common reason why so many of them get rejected. This...READ MORE
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With the rise of remote work, virtual interviews have become increasingly popular. While virtual interviews offer many conveniences, such as eliminating the need for travel, they also present unique challenges. Without the ability to make a personal connection with your interviewer, it can be difficult to convey your skills and experience effectively. In this article, we will provide you with tips and tricks to help you ace your next virtual interview.
Before the interview, make sure you are comfortable with the technology you will be using. This means testing your internet connection, webcam, and microphone. It’s also a good idea to download any necessary software or applications and test them beforehand. If possible, conduct a practice interview with a friend or family member to ensure that everything is working properly.
Preparing for a virtual interview requires ensuring that you have the necessary technology and equipment to participate in the interview smoothly. Here are some steps to take:
Test your equipment: Make sure your computer, webcam, microphone, and internet connection are all working properly. Test them in advance to avoid any last-minute technical issues.
Choose a quiet location: Find a quiet and well-lit location for the interview. Make sure there are no distractions, and avoid public places or areas with loud background noise.
Choose a reliable platform: Use a reliable video conferencing platform, such as Zoom, Skype, or Google Meet. Test the platform beforehand and make sure you are familiar with its features. Double check the required platform before the interview.
Charge your devices: Make sure your laptop, phone, or other devices are fully charged before the interview. Also, have a backup charger available in case of emergencies.
Be prepared for delays: Technical issues can happen, so be prepared for delays or interruptions. Don’t panic and have a backup plan ready in case you need to switch to a phone interview or reschedule the interview.
Just because you’re not meeting your interviewer in person doesn’t mean you can dress casually. Dress as if you were going to an in-person interview. This means wearing professional attire and ensuring that you look neat and presentable. You want to make a good first impression, and dressing appropriately can help you do just that.
When dressing for a virtual interview, it’s important to present yourself professionally and make a good first impression. Here are some guidelines to follow:
Dress appropriately for the industry: Consider the norms and expectations of the industry you are interviewing for. If it’s a formal industry such as finance or law, wear a suit or a dress with a blazer. If it’s a more casual industry such as tech or creative, you can opt for business casual attire.
Dress from head to toe: Even though the interviewer may only see you from the waist up, it’s still important to dress professionally from head to toe. This will help you feel more professional, confident, and put-together.
Avoid distracting patterns or colors: Choose solid, neutral colors such as black, gray, or navy, as they are more professional and less distracting. Avoid bold patterns, bright colors, or flashy jewelry that may take attention away from you.
Consider the camera angle: Choose clothing that looks good on camera and avoid anything that may look awkward or unflattering. Avoid wearing stripes or busy patterns that may appear distorted on camera.
When choosing a location for your virtual interview, it’s important to consider a few factors to ensure that you have a professional and distraction-free environment. Here are some things to keep in mind:
Noise level: Choose a location that is quiet and free from any background noise, such as barking dogs, loud music, or construction noise. A quiet room with a closed door is ideal.
Lighting: Make sure the location has good lighting so that you are well-lit and visible on camera. Natural lighting is best, so choose a location with a window if possible.
Background: Choose a location with a clean, neutral background that is free from any distractions or clutter. Avoid sitting in front of a busy or distracting background, such as a bookshelf or a window with a lot of activity.
Privacy: Choose a location where you can have privacy and won’t be interrupted by family members, roommates, or pets. Let others in your household know that you will be in a virtual interview and ask them to avoid interrupting you.
Comfort: Choose a location where you feel comfortable and at ease. This will help you feel more relaxed and confident during the interview.
While the format of the interview may be different, the questions will likely be the same. Prepare for common interview questions and practice your answers beforehand. This will help you feel more confident during the interview and ensure that you are able to effectively communicate your skills and experience.
Here are some common questions that may be asked during a virtual interview:
Can you tell us about yourself? This question is often asked at the beginning of an interview to allow the interviewer to get to know you better and understand your background and qualifications.
Why are you interested in this position? This question allows the interviewer to understand your motivations for applying for the position and what you hope to gain from it.
What are your strengths and weaknesses? This question allows the interviewer to assess your self-awareness and how well you understand your own abilities.
What are your previous work experiences? This question allows the interviewer to understand your past work experiences, achievements, and skills.
How do you handle difficult situations or conflicts? This question allows the interviewer to assess your problem-solving skills and ability to handle challenging situations.
What are your long-term career goals? This question allows the interviewer to understand your aspirations and how the position you are interviewing for fits into your overall career plans.
Do you have any questions for us? This question allows you to show your interest in the position and the company, as well as gain more information about the job or company culture.
Gain confidence and learn the skills required to articulate your values and strengths with my Interview Workshop:
Body language is just as important in a virtual interview as it is in an in-person interview. Effective body language can help you convey confidence, engagement, and professionalism. Here are some tips to ensure you use effective body language during your virtual interview:
Sit up straight: Sit with your back straight and your shoulders relaxed. This posture conveys confidence and professionalism.
Maintain eye contact: Look directly into the camera when speaking. This gives the impression of making eye contact with the interviewer and conveys engagement.
Avoid fidgeting: Try to avoid fidgeting, tapping your foot or playing with your hair, as it can be distracting and convey nervousness.
Use hand gestures: Use hand gestures to emphasize important points, but avoid excessive or exaggerated gestures that can be distracting.
Smile: Smiling can convey friendliness and positivity, and can help create a good rapport with the interviewer.
Be mindful of your surroundings: Make sure the background behind you is clean, professional, and not distracting.
Use facial expressions: Use facial expressions to show enthusiasm and interest in the conversation. For example, nodding your head can convey agreement and interest.
Showing enthusiasm during a virtual interview is important because it can help demonstrate your interest and passion for the position and company. Here are some ways you can show enthusiasm during a virtual interview:
Research the company: Before the interview, research the company and learn about its mission, values, and culture. Use this knowledge to express your enthusiasm for the company and how you can contribute to its success.
Show interest: Express your interest in the position by asking thoughtful questions about the job responsibilities and the company culture.
Use positive language: Use positive and enthusiastic language during the interview to convey your excitement about the opportunity.
Share your achievements: Talk about your previous achievements and how they relate to the position you’re interviewing for. This can show your enthusiasm for the field and your desire to excel in the role.
Be engaged: Listen carefully to the interviewer’s questions and respond thoughtfully. Show your engagement by asking follow-up questions and providing examples to support your answers.
Show your personality: Show your enthusiasm by being yourself and letting your personality shine through. This can help create a connection with the interviewer and demonstrate your passion for the position.
By showing enthusiasm during your virtual interview, you can demonstrate your interest and passion for the job, which can help make a positive impression on the interviewer.
After the interview, be sure to follow up with a thank you note or email. This will show your appreciation for the opportunity and help you stand out from other candidates. It’s also a good idea to reiterate your interest in the position and your qualifications.
Here are some things you should do to follow up after the virtual interview:
Send a thank-you email: Within 24 hours after the interview, send a thank-you email to the interviewer. In the email, express your appreciation for the opportunity to interview and reiterate your interest in the position.
Be specific: In your thank-you email, be specific about what you enjoyed about the interview and what you learned about the company. This can help show your enthusiasm for the job and your attention to detail.
Personalize your message: Personalize your message by referring to specific points discussed in the interview. This can help demonstrate your engagement and interest in the conversation.
Keep it brief: Keep your thank-you email brief and to the point. You don’t want to overwhelm the interviewer with too much information.
Follow up if needed: If you haven’t heard back from the interviewer within the expected timeframe, send a polite follow-up email to inquire about the status of your application.
Following up after a virtual interview is an important step in the job search process and can help you stand out from other candidates.
Storytelling is a powerful tool for job interviews as it enables candidates to communicate their experiences and accomplishments in a compelling and memorable way.
Virtual interviews can be challenging, but with the right preparation and mindset, you can ace your next interview. By understanding the technology, dressing appropriately, choosing a quiet location, preparing for common interview questions, using body language, showing enthusiasm, and following up, you can demonstrate your skills and experience effectively and land your dream job.
I have spent the last 10 years supporting companies ranging from start-ups to Fortune 500 companies to find and the best talent around the world.
During this time, I have:
Scanned and reviewed more than 26000 CVs.
Conducted over 7000 interviews.
Secured new jobs and promotions in 20 countries across 3 continents.
For the past 4 years I have been developing best practices and solutions to give job seekers more confidence in interviews. I run 1:1 virtual interview workshops which show you how to articulate your values and strengths. Just like in sport, perfect practice makes perfect interviewing. Learn how to take on any interview with confidence with My Interview Workshop:
Are you interested in working with me?
Best of luck,
Your Career Optimiser | Certified Leadership and Management Consultant
Winner of Most Supportive Career Branding Service 2022