March 4, 2015

Video Interviews – don’t be scared!

video interviewA video interview!  Does the idea of this fill you with fear, or will you take the opportunity to show your skills from the comfort of your own home?  You could even keep your Pyjamas on under the table if you like!

Video interviews are becoming more and more common in the recruitment industry with new technology making it easy and convenient. It lets recruiters get a good understanding of a candidate and the way that someone presents them self can be an important factor in the recruitment process. But can a recruitment consultant really get an accurate impression of a candidate via video?

A recent survey carried out by Sonru, ‘The Candidate Experience of Video Interviewing’, found a positive response from respondents, with 72% of candidates feeling happy about the idea of taking part in a video interview and 66% were happy having experienced one. The survey identified a number of other benefits of video interviewing from the candidate point of view, such as 38% found it convenient that they could choose a time that suited their schedule and 20% thought that being able to conduct the interview from home saved the stress and expense of travel.

Although there can be disadvantages of not meeting a candidate face-to-face, in the way that their general demeanour may not come across as clearly; it could actually offer a more realistic impression of the person, as they are typically more relaxed in their own environment.

If you’ve got a video interview coming up here are a few pointers for achieving your best and making the technology work for you.

Dress professionally:

Make sure that you look smart and wear the same outfit that you would for an in-person interview. We joked before about under the table, however it’s probably best to avoid this, in case you have to stand up and end up showing this special outfit choice. Block colours can work best on camera, as they will stand out more amongst your surroundings.

Camera angle:

The best position to place your camera is the same height as the top of your head. Point the camera down and it will give the most flattering angle by encouraging you to tilt your head slightly upwards, it will also help you to sit up straight. Be sure to look at the camera and not the screen, in order to give the impression of making eye contact with the interviewer, as this is an important factor that would be expected in a face-to-face interview.

Be confident:

This may be easier said than done, as not everyone is naturally comfortable speaking into a camera. Try to relax as much as possible and practice is fundamental to building confidence for your video interview.

Neutral backdrop:

It’s probably needless to say that it’s not a great idea to be sitting in a, however, even something like a bookshelf or ornaments may be slightly distracting from the message you are trying to portray in your interview. If possible, set your camera up in front of a blank wall and sit close to the camera so that it is just your head and shoulders in shot, to ensure that you are the central focus of the shot. If not, be sure that the room is tidy and gives a good professional representation of you.

Good quality microphone:

It’s important that your interviewer is able to hear you properly, so invest in a good quality microphone before the interview for clear communication. Make sure you’re in a quiet environment and avoid shuffling papers or moving things around.

Be prepared:

Like you would for any job interview, ensure you have a good knowledge of the company and role that you are interviewing for. Be prepared for the usual questions you may be asked and be equipped with questions to ask your interviewer too. Make sure that you send any materials such as your CV, etc to your interviewer in advance, to save unnecessary time wasting on the occasion.

Good luck!

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