As technology continues to become increasingly advanced, more companies are relying on video conferencing software to set up interviews with potential hires. A video interview makes it possible to converse with candidates who are too far away to conveniently interview in person, and it also saves the company time. If a potential employer asks to set up a video interview, prepare for it the same way you would if you were going in to interview in person. This means you should still research the company beforehand, dress professionally and practice answering commonly asked interview questions. The only difference is that you won't actually be in the same room as the person interviewing you. However, there are a few things you can do to make sure you convey professionalism from afar. Here are four tips to help you prepare for a video interview:
1. Double check your technology
Make sure that whatever software or program you're using works properly before the interview starts. Close all other open windows and Web browsers on your computer to make sure your device can stand up to the demands of video conferencing. If you are struggling to figure out the technology, email someone from the company as far in advance of the interview as possible and have them walk you through the program. This will demonstrate initiative and preparation.
2. Look at the camera
It's natural when video conferencing to look at the people on the screen. Keep in mind that the camera is usually located above the screen of your computer. Look at the camera so there is eye contact between you and the interviewer(s) on the other end.
3. Dress appropriately
In the specific case of video interviews, some applicants decide to only dress up above the waist, because both parties are usually sitting and a person's pants go unseen. However, if you have to get up for any reason during the interview, and are wearing pajama pants or jeans, it will look unprofessional and likely leave interviewers looking for other candidates. Dress the exact same way you would if you were going into the company's offices to avoid this embarrassing faux pas.
4. Be aware of the background
When you're setting up your camera and interview area, look around to make sure your surroundings look professional. Clean off the table at which you are sitting and be aware of what is visible behind you during the interview. Remove anything that could be viewed as unprofessional.