How to Ace a Video Interview

April 3, 2020

Video job interviews are an increasingly common part of the hiring process, especially in today’s current climate.  And a little preparation can go a long way to ensuring you come across as confident, comfortable and articulate. Here are nine foolproof ways to have a successful video interview. They’re easy … and can make a huge difference in your success:

  1. Dress Smartly | Make sure your haircut, facial hair and makeup look professional. Dress stylishly in business casual and wear neutral colors. Avoid patterns, bright colors and all white, as they are distracting and do not convey well in video.
  1. Backgrounds are Important | A neutral background is your best bet. Make sure you are the focus of the interviewer’s attention, not this morning’s half-eaten bagel or your daughter’s latest artwork. What you’re trying to do is avoid anything blatantly distracting or embarrassing.

  2. Angles matter | Your camera angle is important. Place the webcam at the same height as the top of your head and point it slightly downward, as this is generally the most flattering angle. Plus, this will force you to sit up straight and remain focused.

  3. A good microphone is essential | It’s important to be heard, so make sure you have a good quality microphone. Beware of noises in the room in addition to your voice, that a microphone will pick up. In other words, don’t shuffle papers, tap your foot or organize your desk.

  4. Get rid of distractions | Ensure you’re fully engaged by removing all distractions, including your smartphone. Keep pets and children out of earshot. You don’t want a cat jumping on the back of your chair, your mom hollering at you, or your toddler screaming right when you’re talking about how amazing and professional you are. 

  5. Make Notes | A great thing about a video interview is that there are areas not visible to your interviewer. Use these to remind yourself of key talking points. Place a flip chart sheet on the wall behind your webcam or write out notes to keep beside you. You don’t want to heavily rely on these, but you can certainly use them to jog your memory.

  6. Be Personable | Make eye contact, smile often and generally engage with the interviewer to demonstrate your enthusiasm. Look at the interviewer, not off into space or down at your notes. Lean forward slightly to show you’re engaged and actively listening. Oh, and a good rule of thumb is that if someone can see the ‘whites’ of your eyes, you’re probably a little too close to the camera.
  1. Be Prepared | Do your homework. Rehearse your responses to key questions, prepare your own questions and practice, practice, practice. This is a good chance to get objective feedback on lighting and camera angle, your speaking speed, the quality of your answers and your on-camera appearance.

  2. Follow-Up | Finally, don’t forget to follow-up. Send a note to your interviewer, thanking them for their time. It’s this little detail that shows your seriousness and ability to follow through.

While video interviews can be concerning, they are something that can be ‘aced’ when the above tips are followed.  And who knows, you may just end up being a natural on camera.

Interested in more interview tips and tricks. Check out our blogs on Looking Like a Rockstar During your Next Interview and How to Answer Behavioral Questions

Good luck on your next interview.


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