Video Interviewing - Best Practices
The Admiral has compiled some handy tips on how to best prepare for your video interview to land your dream job. We hope you find these helpful and will contribute to your success.
As technology continues to advance at a phenomenal rate, far more companies are embracing video conferencing. The Admiral has employed leading edge video interview technology which embraces a truly personalised touch.
You may easily participate in a video interview from a convenient location of your choice, in comfortable surroundings, at a time that best fits into your hectic schedule.
All major web browsers are supported: Windows Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Apple Safari and Mozilla Firefox; plus the convenience of conducting an interview via an Apple iPad.
Simply click on the + signs below to expand any section to learn more...
- Creating a Video-Friendly Environment:
It is essential to have everything in place before you begin. The last thing you want is to have technical difficulties when you’re being interviewed; it is vital to ensure your microphone, webcam and sound settings are all in top working order. Test the sound and reduce or increase the volume accordingly.
Consider calling upon a friend to perform a sound test and help you practise with a role-play of the interview to obtain valuable feedback on how you present yourself.
If you have a tendency to speak fast when nervous then it is important to stay focused on how you speak to ensure the recording is clearly understood.
Ensure any potential distractions are eliminated or minimized so the focus remains on you, not what may be going on in your background.
Follow these simple guidelines and you will have created an ideal recording space in little time.
- ✔ Position your webcam so when you sit, it is directly at eye-level
- ✔ Check your equipment and be sure to test your sound level on your computer.
- ✔ Establish how you should adjust your lighting as proper lighting is essential for good video quality.
- • A simple desk lamp can be used as your main light source.
• The main light source should be the brightest in the room.
• Don’t position yourself in front of open windows or other distracting background light.
• Turn on any available lights in the room, close all windows.
• Check to make sure there is no glare on your monitor.
• Never use your monitor as your light source.
- ✔ Be mindful of your background
- • Position yourself in front of a wall with neutral colors; avoid patterns, wallpaper, and mirrors.
• De-cluttering your space is vital as you do not want anything to divert your attention.
• Make sure you are the only person in the room, move all the junk away from your desk.
• Make sure to keep the background simple and uncluttered as well.
• It is important to set up the camera so that it focuses centrally on your head and shoulders.
• Keep the microphone near you so that you can easily be understood.
• Remember to not move papers near the microphone as these sounds will become intensified.
• Try to anticipate and cut out any distracting background noises, e.g. traffic, clocks ticking, etc.
• Remember to switch your phone onto silent.
• Close any computer applications that may make sounds.
• Clean your recording area as a tidy workspace conveys professionalism to your future employer.
• Turn off all appliances or devices that may create ambient noise.
- ✔ Your recording space should be quiet and comfortable.
- • Allot yourself ample time to answer each question; 1 hour in total should be sufficient.
• Eliminate all possible distractions and interruptions.
• If at home, make sure people within the house know you are taking an interview.
• Turn off your cell phone.
- Preparing for your Interview:
Mental preparation for your interview is just as important as the physical setup. You should prepare for your pre-recorded video interview with the same tenacity and focus as if you were walking into your potential employer’s office.
- ✔ Practice, practice, practice – before even turning on your webcam.
Look into the camera as if you were having a conversation with someone sitting in front of you.
- In a traditional interview, eye contact is of the utmost importance so make sure you look directly into the camera to answer the questions posed to you.
- Do not look at the computer screen when answering questions – this places your line of sight below the webcam and you will appear to be looking down from the interviewer’s point of view.
- It may seem awkward at first, but the more you rehearse looking at the webcam and not the person on the screen, the more comfortable you will feel during your interview.
- ✔ Research the company and ready yourself to answer company-specific questions.
- Familiarize yourself with the company’s mission statement, history, product and service offerings, management, and information about the company culture.
- Look at current events – read their recent press releases so in the interview you can knowledgeably discuss the direction in which the company is going.
- ✔ Be prepared to answer any questions about your resume and rehearse your responses.
- Review your resume and develop multiple talking points about all of your past experiences.
- Polish your answers – nothing destroys your credibility faster than a constant stream of filler words such as “um”, “like”, and “you know”.
- ✔ Dress for success; communicate professionalism with your attire.
- Men: Navy, black, or dark grey suit, long sleeve dress shirt, conservative tie, professional, clean-cut hairstyle, clean-shaven.
- Women: Navy, black, or dark grey suit, coordinated blouse, limited jewelry (no dangling earrings, arms full of bracelets), professional hairstyle, light make-up.
- What not to wear for a webcam: stripes or busy patterns as some video monitors form fluctuating patterns on the screen when broadcasting striped patterns.
- In general, you should look as if you put considerable time and effort into your personal appearance. Your clothing should complement you, not be a distraction.
- Taking the Interview:
The most important step in this process is answering the pre-recorded interview questions. Our video interviewing experts have provided some suggestions guaranteed to make you look good.
- ✔ Speak clearly and enunciate.
- You don’t want your brilliant answers to be lost because you were mumbling.
- Don’t rush but don’t dawdle either – the company that is interviewing you has pre-determined the length of your answers. This information is listed in your invitation to interview along with an option to re-try your answer (some companies choose not to offer this to emulate a live video experience). Practice answering questions and time yourself to make sure you are answering effectively in the allotted time.
- ✔ Treat the camera as the employer
- It may certainly seem odd however it is vital that you treat the video camera as if it were the hiring manager. Look directly at the camera when speaking. This will give the impression you are confident and not in anyway timid of technology or the interviewing process. Don’t look away from the camera as this may give the interviewer the impression that you are lacking interest in the role or easily distracted.
- ✔ Listen to each question, contemplate your response, and answer concisely.
- Make sure you answer the question being asked. Off-base, round-a-bout answers are a surefire way to talk yourself out of a job.
- If you are given the opportunity to retry your answer, try to nail down your response sooner rather than later. We have found that more tries may begin to dilute a clear message, so your first or second answer will probably be your best.
- ✔ Answer with a headline.
- The first sentence of your answer should set the tone by restating the question and providing your initial opinion.
- From there, you can add details from your own research, opinions, and experiences. However, you should always make sure you cycle back to your original point and don’t stray too far off topic.
- ✔ Body language and Appearance
- If you feel it could be helpful to calm your nerves consider drinking herbal tea and practice deep breathing exercises before the interview starts. Contrary to an in-person interview, you may want to minimise your body and hand movements on a video interview as rapid movements may sometimes look jerky on a video screen.
- ✔ Take a deep breath, relax, and let your personality shine through.
- At the end of the day, employers hire human beings, not just the name at the top of a resume.
- Smile and have fun – remember, if you are adequately prepared, you will be successful.
We hope you found these tips provided a solid platform to undertake your video interview with the Admiral.
If you would like more information on how to perform well in any interview, including face to face interviews, please feel free to reach out to any of our skilled talent sourcers. It would be our great pleasure to provide advice on how to research a role, how to present yourself, what types of questions to ask to demonstrate you have real insight into both the role and their business, plus a great deal more!