A remote interview is an interview that is done virtually. Typically, the interview is completed on a computer using a video platform. This type of interview provides challenges that face-to-face interviews do not, such as use of technology, lighting, and sound.
In this reading, you will learn tips to have a successful remote interview.
Test your technology
The first tip is to test your technology before the interview. Ideally, a day or two before. This allows you to resolve any technical issues you may have.
You should test your computer’s camera, microphone, and video platform software. If possible, test the video platform software with a friend. Ensure that your camera and microphone work well with the software.
Perfect your lighting
When interviewing remotely, ensure that you are well lit for the interview. You may need to rearrange your desk or furniture to ensure good lighting.
If possible, situate your desk or camera in front of a window with natural lighting. Always try to have light behind your camera so that it will shine on your face.
If you can’t position your desk next to a window or don’t have enough light coming from the window, consider using artificial light. Move a lamp or light fixture behind the camera.
You should avoid having a light or window directly behind you. Having a light source behind you may cause the video to be blurry and make it difficult to see your face.
Practice communicating through video
Communicating through video can be a challenge because there is less body language and a slight sound delay. The sound delay can make it difficult to know how long to wait for someone to stop speaking and for you to start. This is somewhat a learned skill and you will become comfortable with how long to pause with practice.
If you don’t have experience communicating through video, consider practicing with friends and family before the remote interview. This will help you learn how pauses affect video communication.
Look into the camera when speaking
When communicating through video, try to look into the camera when speaking instead of at the video of the person you’re speaking to. Looking into the camera gives the person you’re speaking with the feeling that you are maintaining eye contact. If you look down and speak at their image, it will appear on the video as if you are looking slightly down
Just because the interview isn’t in person doesn’t mean you should dress down for the occasion. Depending on the type of role and company you’re interviewing for, you may need to wear formal business attire. Whereas for another position, more casual clothing may be appropriate. Do research on the company to determine which type of interview outfit is suitable for the role and company.
Choose a professional interview location
Review your video background before the interview. Typically, you should avoid having an unorganized background or any objects that may distract the interviewer.
Depending on the video software, there may be virtual backgrounds available. A virtual background displays an image or video behind you during a meeting, which can provide you with privacy and a more professional look. Make sure to use a background that is professional and appropriate for the role and to test it out before going into the interview.
Sign in early
Ideally, before the interview, you should have already tested your technology and feel confident that everything will work. However, technology and software can be unpredictable. Sign in to your remote interview early to ensure everything is working properly.
Additionally, signing in early indicates to your interviewer that you respect the interviewer’s time and are a punctual person. These are two positive qualities that the interviewer may be interested in.
If you’ve never interviewed remotely before, it can feel intimidating. Follow the tips in this reading to give yourself more confidence with the process. Always test your technology before the interview and, if possible, the video software as well. This will increase the likelihood the remote interview goes well, and you present yourself in the best way possible.