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Ace Your Next Virtual Interview

A few years ago, virtual interviews were the ‘future of recruitment.’ Today, they’re a necessity for employers who want to hire new team members. And if you’re looking for your next role, they are an asset.

Virtual interviews are those that take place using video conferencing technology. They’re not just a glorified phone interview: they allow both parties to parse the nonverbal cues you’d miss over the phone.

Are you staring into the face of yet another virtual interview? Here’s how you can ace it and win your next role.

Prepare Like It’s an In-Person Interview

Virtual interviews are in-person interviews, even if you’re not in the office. So rather than preparing for a preliminary chat like you might with a phone interview, treat it like a normal interview.

What does that mean? Think about potential questions, come up with helpful anecdotes, and write down your questions. You also need to dress the part, so make sure to come in your best business casual (at a minimum).

Test Your Technology Half an Hour Early

You wouldn’t be late for an interview on-site, and you definitely can’t be late for a virtual interview. There’s little leeway for tardiness if you don’t have to leave your house, so make sure you rule out everything that could get in your way beforehand.

The most common reason virtual interviews start late is because of a technology fail. To prevent that from happening, test out your speakers and microphone early. If you’re not familiar with the web conferencing tool, read a quick how-to before the interview starts. 

And if it’s an app, download it earlier in the day. Don’t be caught waiting for it to install when your appointment rolls around!

If you’re having any technical problems or you think there’s an issue on their end, acknowledge it. Don’t be afraid to say you can’t hear or see your interviewer well. It’s better to let them know than to try to fly blind.

Practice Your Pace and Tone

Given the role of the camera, many people focus solely on the video aspect of the interview. While your background, lighting, and appearance are very important, you shouldn’t forget to focus on the audio.

Lag, noise, accents, and other issues make virtual interviews trickier than asking a candidate into the office. To help them out, you should focus on speaking clearly and at a reasonable, natural pace. Use your pauses wisely and use your nonverbal communication to make it clear when you’re finished speaking.

Be Yourself to Ace Your Next Virtual Interview

Virtual interviews are a great way to speed up the recruiting process and save everyone time. They’re not a replacement for a final, in-person interview, but they’re a great substitute, particularly right now as companies try to hire while social distancing.

The best trick for virtual interviews is to treat them like a normal interview and prepare accordingly. Be early, know where you’re going, and above all, be yourself.

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