Video Interview Guide: Tips for a Successful Online Interview

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Video job interviews are definitely here to stay, and if you have one coming up, you need to be ready!

In this guide, we give you some useful tips and advice to help you prepare.

Video Interview Tips

  • Find a quiet, private, well-lit place, free from possible interruptions.
  • Ideally use a laptop or desktop computer with a webcam; these are better options than a tablet or smartphone.
  • Ensure your internet connection is stable.
  • Check that your computer’s audio is working, consider using headphones if the audio is clearer. Why not call a friend beforehand to check?
  • Test your computer’s webcam.
  • Close any unnecessary web browser tabs and applications.
  • Dress professionally and avoid bright colours – this might be too distracting, especially on a Monday morning!
  • Have a pen, notepad and copy of your CV on your desk.
  • When listening, make eye contact, smile and show you are engaged.
  • Position your webcam so that you have a neutral background.
  • Keep your mood upbeat and convey optimism with your body language.
  • If you’re at all nervous, ask a family member to do a practice run with you and ask them for their feedback.
  • Obviously do your research into the company and the job just as much as you would if it was a Face-to-face interview.
  • Clear your desk space and the room – you don’t want your washing drying in the background.
  • Have a glass or bottle of water next to you – just in case you need it, don’t be afraid to sip on a cup of tea where needed, it shows that you’re calm cool and collective and it might even give you time to ponder on an answer!

Live vs. pre-recorded video interviews

  • Most interviews will be live – you will be sent a link that the employer shares with you via Skype, Zoom, Teams or other video conference provider.
  • If you’re using a personal Skype or Google account, make sure that you have a professional username and check your privacy settings.
  • Some organisations may use pre-recorded video interviews. This can be a little more disconcerting, so be prepared! In this format, the employer will give you instructions on how to join the interview.

Instead of being connected with a person, you’ll be prompted to answer interview questions that have been pre-recorded or appear in writing on the screen. You’ll record your answer to each question and the employer will review the recording later. There is often a time limit for your answers, and you may be given more than one chance to record each answer.

Don’t forget at the end to thank the interviewer for their time and ask what the next steps will be. 

Good luck!


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