10 Tips for Video Interviewees
Video interviewing is no different than a face-to-face interview. But, if you’re new to video interviewing there are a few tips that can help you prepare, so you feel confident and ready to get that dream job!
All of the other tips in this post rely on this tip! First, Connexion Pointe® has “Interview School” with multiple resources to help you prepare for your interview. Whether you need help creating responses to behavioral questions, preparing stories, or creating content for your Pointe Profile®, Interview School can help. If you are comfortable with your work experience and understand how it relates to your desired position, you will likely come across with confidence. Taking the time to put your experience into a story format using the response methods like S.T.A.R., C.A.R., and others will help you recall your answers and experience during the interview, so you are more prepared and look more professional to deliver relevant answers to the questions.
Next, our Pointe Profile® application features an interview practice tool to help you get into the habit of recording yourself and evaluating your performance. You can also create an unlimited number of custom interviews in English or English and Spanish to completely dial in your interviewing skills!
Being prepared is critical in boosting your confidence, and it will show when you do your interviews in front of others.
Imagine being in an interview and the phone is blowing up with text messages or calls, the dog is barking, kids are playing, T.V. blaring, or people are talking in the background. Can you say, disturbing?
Make sure you tell your friends, family, roommates, or anyone that is in the area with you that you are about to record your job interview and need some quiet time. The great thing about creating your Connexion Pointe® interview is you have control over your environment. But, you must keep in mind that even though you are in a comfortable environment, you are still doing a job interview. If you wouldn’t bring these distractions with you to an in-person interview, then you should do your best to keep them out of your Pointe Profile® interview.
Turn your electronics off and set up some quiet time so you can have a great interview that focuses on you being your best.
Setting the stage for your interview is important. You probably wouldn’t hold an interview in your bathroom or your bedroom with loads of laundry all around. Set up your surrounding environment, so it is clean and doesn’t distract the hiring manager. You want them looking at you and paying attention to what you say, not watching the background and wondering why you didn’t do your laundry. Select an area that is comfortable with a neutral background; a plain wall will do the trick.
Test. Test. 1, 2, 3. Check the microphone on your computer to make sure it works. Also, speak in a normal speaking tone when recording your Pointe Profile ® interview. You don’t have to yell for the microphone to pick up your voice. A normal speaking tone will work.
However, we found that your smartphone headphones with a mic work just fine. If you have an iPhone, the white headphones are perfect to use. Put them on and plug them into your computer, then do a test run. Also, if you are a little savvy and have a podcast mic, you can record the sound through an external mic.
Speak in at a normal volume and annunciate your words so you speak clearly, and the interviewer can hear everything you say.
You’re on video, so lighting is important. Set up in a well-lit area, so your face is easily seen through the camera. Avoid backlighting, which is any strong lighting that is behind you, like a window. If you want to take advantage of sunlight near a window, direct yourself towards the window, so the sun lights your face. You will look like a dark silhouette if the sunlight is behind your head. Avoid up-lighting with strong lighting from below your chin. This angle is used in horror movies and is not the most flattering for a video interview. Most standard room lighting will suffice. If the room is a little darker, use an additional lamp in front of the camera or sit facing a window when it is sunny outside. You want the hiring manager to clearly and easily see your face.
Framing is what the hiring manager will see on screen. You want your head and shoulders to take up most of the center screen. If you frame yourself too much to the left or right or too small in the frame, you create “static” in the background. Static is unnecessary space that can distract the hiring manager’s attention away from you. For example, when you watch a news anchor, their face, head, and shoulders are well in the center of the frame. This ensures the hiring manager’s attention is on you and what you are saying.
Test Equipment with a Practice Run
Don’t wait until the last minute to check your equipment. Test your webcam, smartphone cam, speakers, microphone, and lighting individually and using them altogether. Do this ahead of time, so you have a chance to fix any bugs and can be confident and relaxed as you take your video interview.
Do a practice run using all of your equipment and answering a couple of practice interview questions. A practice run not only allows you to check your equipment but allows you to see how you respond to hitting the “record” button. Even if you test yourself using your standard video camera on your smartphone, watch the recording and see how you feel about your recording. Check the volume, the background, framing,
There are a few websites you can visit that will help you test your equipment. Here’s one that has great instructions, but feel free to check out others:
Dressing for the job you want is some of the best advice you’ll hear. However, there are a few exceptions with video. Remember that you want the attention of the person watching on you and listening, without distraction, to what you are saying at all times. Dress appropriately for the video interview as you would any face-to-face interview. Avoid any busy patterns on your clothes and noisy jewelry. Some patterns on video can look odd and detract from your presentation. Noisy jewelry can be an audio distraction, and the hiring manager may not be able to hear your responses. A test run with your interview clothes will help you determine if you should make different choices with your attire.
Body language is noticeable in person and on video. Present yourself with confidence and openness by having good posture and relaxed arms. Slouching, crossed arms, or leaning back in your chair can give the wrong impression during an in-person interview, and there’s no difference with video. Of course, people want to see you smile! Smiling can make you look approachable, friendly, and enthusiastic. An employer certainly wants an enthusiastic member on their team versus the alternative. So sit up and smile!
Sometimes relaxing seems easier said than done but, just as you would do your best during an in-person interview, consider using the same techniques for your video interview. Avoid drinking too much caffeine from coffee or energy drinks to not come across as jittery during your interview. Also, take a few minutes to breathe and gather your thoughts before your record.
Don’t rush your answers. We’ve shown you that two minutes is more than enough time to answer, and if you’ve gone through Interview School, you’ve prepared your stories and responses in advance. Take your time and make sure you speak clearly without rushing. Minimizing the caffeine, as we mentioned, will help with this too.
You are actually at an advantage with your Pointe Profile® interview because you are in control of your environment. You can be in a comfortable location, have time to prepare, and you don’t have a stranger in the room along with all that comes along with meeting someone new. The animated character within the application is there to help make the interview “feel” like an in-person interview but without bias or behavior. It’s just you and your webcam, so breathe and relax.
Our Free Ebook can help!
Our free ebook is available to help you improve your interviewing skills in person and on-camera. Just complete the form below, and we’ll send it to you! We also offer an inexpensive masterclass for supporting your resume, job search, and networking with video through our Career Equity LLC training partners.