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How to Nail that Remote Interview
Written By
On Jul, 22 2020
3 minute read

Remote interviews aren’t anything like in-person interviews, so it’s understandable that you can feel apprehensive or nervous about doing one. In some ways, it may be more intimidating than talking to an interviewer directly, and in others, you may find it easier. Either way, you’ll need to prepare for the interview in a different manner that you may be used to, so we’ve compiled some tips on how you can nail that remote interview and find your next role.

Do Your Research

Just like how you would for an in-person interview, do some background research on your interviewer. Look for mutual contacts or connections, or shared experiences, like a similar project you’ve both completed. Having things in common with your interviewer will put both of you at ease, making the interview smoother on both sides; as an added bonus, the more shared traits you have, the more likeable you come off as a person. Interviewers like it when it’s clear you’ve done your research, and you’ll appear to be more invested in the company and the role you’re applying for, than someone who fumbles over the job description.

Get Expert Support

Entire industries revolve around job application coaching/mentoring, and it’s clear to see why. Prepared candidates are more confident, understand how they can present themselves to fit the company’s business goals and objectives, and are much more likely to leave a good impression on the interviewer. Personal career agents can offer coaching to job seekers that can help them gain a deeper understanding of the industry and advice on what companies like to see in an applicant. Some companies, like, even offer candidates guidance through innovative AI platforms. Even just a short prep call with an expert can help applicants get an edge over other prospective candidates.

Have Notes Open

Taking an interview over a video conferencing platform like Skype or Zoom is a little like an open note test, in that you can access all the resources you need for the interview while you’re in the middle of doing it. However, don’t pile every single piece of paper you think you’ll need on your desk in hopes that you can pull it out to reference during the interview. Instead, consider putting all the information you’ll need on a small Post-it or a digital Notepad app near the camera. Though the scope of your interviewer’s camera is limited, they can still see your eyes darting across the screen or looking away, so try and keep all the important information you’ll need somewhere where it’s not too obvious you’re using a cheat sheet. Using Post-it notes also helps with brevity, so you can avoid any interviewing mishaps where it’s obvious you’re reading off of something.

Keep Your Eyes on the Camera

It can be easy to look at other parts of your display, such as where the interviewer’s face is positioned or that annoying speck of dirt on the corner of your screen. However, try to make a conscious effort to look directly into the camera. According to this study by the Idiap Research Institute, traits like confidence, extroversion and interest are expressed by prolonged eye contact. If you keep your eyes trained on the camera, interviewers will unconsciously label you as assertive and self-assured, personality traits that are always in demand in strong employees. If the employer is using AI interview software to analyze you, you’ll also be given extra points for this focus.

Film a Test Run

One of the best things about a video interview is that you can record your screen while doing a mock run and see exactly what the interviewer will see on the other side of the screen. It’s always important to double check the lighting and sound, as well as check for any nervous tics or any distracting items in the background. You can also send the test copy to a family member or friend and have them critique it to make sure that everything will run smoothly for the actual event. There’s never such a thing as being too prepared; it’s better to learn from a few test runs than to realize afterwards that the interviewer was distracted by your on-screen lack of focus.

                                                      . . . 

The remote interview might be different in many ways from what you’re used to, but in the end, all interviews are cut from the same cloth. As long as you take into account the factors you’ll need to consider for the digital medium, you’ll be able to ace it easily.

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