V is for Video Interview: How to Prepare for a Video Interview

Video Interview

Have you ever had to do a video interview? I have been forced to do a handful of them, and I’ll be honest, they can be intimidating. It can be awkward talking with someone of a video chat like Skype or FaceTime. It’s even more awkward if you’re just recording your audio responses to interview questions.

However, with how technology is advancing, it’s becoming more and more common to conduct video interviews. They are more efficient for non-local candidates, and they allow you to have the interview at more convenient times and locations. Here are eight tips to nail that scary video interview.

Ensure you have a strong WiFi connection

This is one of the most important tips for a successful video interview. If your WiFi connection is weak or spotty, your interview won’t go well. The connection may be laggy, or worse, the video call may drop altogether.

Nothing is more distracting than poor video quality! To improve your WiFi signal, hardwire your computer directly into your router if possible. Also, ensure nobody else on the network is streaming Netflix during the interview. The less traffic on your network, the better the signal will be for your interview!

Charge it up

This may seem obvious, but when the stress kicks in before an interview, it can be easy to forget the little things. Ensure your computer is charged up! You don’t want your device dying on you in the middle of the interview.

Double-check your audio/video

Video calling software can be tricky. Sometimes the audio is playing right, or the video won’t play on one end or the other. My advice would be to test it out the night before the interview. Call a friend to do a quick test call to make sure the video and audio are working like it should be.

Choose an appropriate background

You want the focus to be on you, not the background. Thus, pick a clean background that won’t cause a distraction. Avoid windows that are bringing in too much light. Remove any posters from your college dorm room and ensure there isn’t anything behind you that could hurt your chances of getting a callback.

Having proper lighting

Lighting is a key to a great video interview. You want the room to be well-lit, so the interviewers can see your face, but you don’t want the room to be too bright that the video looks washed out. If your room isn’t well-lit, temporarily move another lamp into the room to improve the lighting. Trust me, it will be worth the hassle.

Dress for success

Just because your interview at home, doesn’t mean that you get the luxury of interviewing in your pajamas. You want to dress as if you are interviewing in person. You always want to look your best in an interview, so a video interview is no different.

Proper camera angle and eye contact

Just like any other interview, good eye contact and posture are crucial. You want to be looking at the camera as you speak, not down at your notes. Sitting up straight illustrates confidence and professionalism, so avoid slouching in your chair.

You also want to make sure the camera angle is good. Make sure the camera is capturing your entire head, all the way down to your chest. This will show off your interview outfit and so you don’t look like a floating head.

Prep like a normal interview

Keep in mind that a video interview is no different than any other interview; all of the same rules and guidelines exist. You want to make sure you know the job description like the back of your hand.

Do your due diligence and have a good understanding of the organization you are applying to and the industry they operate. And as always, have a handful of questions ready to ask at the end of the interview and be sure to follow up afterward. Good luck!