While virtual interviews should be treated no different from an in-person interview, they do present some unique challenges. Here are ten tips to help you through your next virtual interview!
1. Create a Professional Virtual Screen Name
While you might already have a virtual account, you it important to present a professional presence during your virtual interview. Consider using only your first and last name; not only is this professional but it will be easy for the recruiter to identify you.
2. System CHECK
Before the interview, be sure to check all technology. First, turn off all applications other than the virtual communication application. Familiarize yourself with camera applications and be sure that your internet connection is working properly. To avoid connectivity issues, plug your computer directly into an Ethernet port as it offers a more stable connection than wireless.
To impress the recruiter, they will need to hear you, and computer microphones are not the best. Consider investing in a USB –connected microphone to ensure your voice is crisp and clear. Set-up in a room with little to no background noise or distractions but an area which is not completely bare as empty rooms can actually cause sound to echo.
Position the camera at eye level and arm’s length away. Position the camera so that the upper half of your body is visible and able to capture your non-verbal ques.
5. Create a Good Background
Pay attention to what is in the background. Remove any visible clutter and pictures which might serve as a distractor. You want your interview room to be neat and simple, but yet not bare.
Over and under head lighting can result in shadows and glare. If you are using artificial lighting, place the light source in front of you. Natural like is okay but be sure the window is in front of you as windows to the side and behind can create distracting shadows.
Dress, from head-to-toe, just as though you were going to an in-person interview. You might think dressing only from the waste-up will suffice but you never know if you might have reason to stand up during the virtual interview.
Look directly into the camera and not the screen as fixating on yourself will give the impression that you are not making eye contact. Similar to an in-person interview, sit up straight and tall and avoid fidgeting or swaying back and forth.
9. Remember to Smile
Virtual interviews can sometimes make it difficult to capture your enthusiasm. Add a simple smile will help the recruiter feel your emotions and excitement about the opportunity.
10. Be confident!
Avoid writing down notes and reading off them during the interview. Believe in yourself and don’t’ forget that UCS is here to help you prepare!
By Kristin Pawlowski, Sr. Assistant Director
University Career Services