During the pandemic, video job interviews became the norm for all sorts of roles. However, due to the globalised nature of the electronics industry, we already had a bit of a head start.
At PER Specialist Recruitment, we hire candidates for electronics, SMPS, UPS and semiconductor roles from all over the world. Given the logistical challenges that brings, we regularly conduct video interviews with candidates and can provide a few hints and tips to help you succeed.
1. Be well-prepared
Just as you would for a face-to-face interview, you must take the necessary steps to prepare. Of course, there’s no train ticket to buy or route to plan, but you do still need to be ready to perform when the time comes. Essential steps including:
- Charge your laptop or tablet and make sure it’s positioned so that it remains upright and you can be seen clearly.
- Test the technology you intend to use and make sure the camera, microphone and Wi-Fi are all working well.
- Choose a location where you’re going to be distraction free and well away from pets and children.
- Turn off email, text, social media alerts and software updates that could make a noise or appear on your screen during the interview.
- Make sure you’re well-lit. Indirect natural light is usually your best bet.
- Create a background that’s clean, well-lit and clutter-free. Virtual backgrounds are not advised for job interviews.
2. Log in early
Despite being able to do a video interview from the comfort of your own home, it always surprises us how many people log in at the last minute or are even a minute or two late. We’d always recommend that you log in between five and 10 minutes early. That gives you the time to make sure everything is working, get comfortable and have one last look at your notes. You’ll then be ready and waiting when the employer logs in.
3. Speak clearly and slowly
With the interviewer not able to see you in person, there’ll be even more emphasis on how well you speak. Digital connections and microphones can be unreliable, so speak a little more loudly and slowly than you would usually so the interviewer doesn’t have to strain to hear you. You should also leave a couple of seconds after each question before delivering your answer to avoid speaking over the interviewer.
4. Dress for an interview
It doesn’t matter what form it takes—this is a job interview, so dress like it. Aside from creating a good first impression and looking like you really want the job, dressing smartly will help to put you in the right frame of mind to perform.
5. Create a connection
Maintaining the right amount of eye contact during an in-person interview is essential. Creating a connection during a video interview is equally important but it’s not quite so straightforward. When answering a question, look at the webcam rather than at the interviewer on the screen, as that will help your eyes to align. When you’re listening to the interviewer, always look back at the screen.
6. Be aware of your body language
Whether you’re listening or speaking, your body language should show that you’re positive and upbeat. A simple way to do this is to sit with a straight back and shoulders open. Make sure you have a chair that supports this. Your feet should be planted on the floor and your arms rested on the table or in your lap.
When listening, nod and smile to show the interviewer that they have your full attention and never let your gaze drift away from the screen. When speaking, use hand gestures to help you communicate if it feels natural, but try to keep your movements close to your body and avoid fidgeting at all costs.
7. Show your appreciation
When the video interview is coming to an end, make sure you thank the interviewer for their time, just as you would in an in-person interview. You could also follow up with a quick thank you email within 24 hours to reinforce your interest in the role. Ideally, you should also mention something you discussed during the interview to try and build a personal connection.
The best chance of success
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