Tips for Conducting a Successful Video Interview
March 27, 2019 by Nisha Raghavan, Talent Attraction and Employer Branding Specialist, American Heart Association
Digital interviewing or internet based interviewing is not new anymore. More and more companies are transitioning to video interviewing to reduce the cost of flying in candidates to the interview location. And more companies are encouraging their employees to work remotely so video interviewing helps connect the hiring team and the candidates irrespective of where they are located with a click of a button and with less cost.
It can be overwhelming sometimes for a person who is not that tech savvy to get used to the experience of video interviewing. But the below tips can help you to focus on what is important and not have the anxiety of using technology gets in your way.
Video interview Tips for Candidates:
When doing your video interviews chances are there may be a lot of distraction and disturbance based on your internet bandwidth and where you are taking the video interviews from. Chances are you might focus on the obvious. Meaning, things that you have a control on like internet connection, speaker, camera, good lighting, quiet background etc Doing a successful video interview is about focusing on the not so obvious factors too.
Ask your recruiter on how to interview
Your recruiter should be your go-to person who can help you prepare for the video interview. Get with your recruiter to learn more about how the whole process is going to be, is the interview going to be a LIVE interview or on demand (where you can take the video interview based on your convenience and need to record your responses to the question). Understand how the whole experience going to be, how much time you got, what type of questions will be asked, what the hiring manager looking for etc. Definitely, ask who you will be interviewing with and look them up on LinkedIn to learn a little bit more about their background. These will help you boost your confidence and prepare well in advance.
Treat it like a face to face interview
Don’t get technology get in your way. The video interview can be overwhelming for those who are a little camera shy. Focus more on the conversation! Video Interview platform is just going to be a tool but the interviewing process, interviewers expectations, and the interview experience would be just the same as any face to face interview. So prepare as you would normally prepare for your face to face interviews. Read and re-read your resume, make a note of your accomplishments that you want to highlight during your conversation, be sure to share experiences that you can relate to what the hiring manager is looking for, if you don’t understand the question then ask for clarification. Be sure to dress professionally, Have a print out of your resume handy with you, look at the camera and talk confidently.
Be Yourself and don’t cheat
Be sure to smile and let your personality shine by being yourself in front of the camera where interviewers can see the real you. If you are nervous or camera shy, tell it upfront. So if interviewers can understand that you are trying your best. Interviewers would want you to enjoy the experience and want to make you comfortable. And make sure you are not reading anything off of your screen and trying to cheat. Interviewers can easily understand that. Prepare well in advance and talk relating to your experience and qualification instead of making something up.
Video Interview Tips for Managers
It can be overwhelming for you as a first time user to navigate the video interview platform but making sure the below points will help you provide a great interview experience for your candidates.
Be sure to smile and be friendly
Interviewers have a great role in making the candidates comfortable when they step inside the company to meet with you. You will be a great host to provide the best interview experience for the candidates so even if they are not selected they will share that experience with their friends and their network. Winning! Virtual interview experience shouldn’t limit your ability to show your side of personality and culture that makes the candidates see themselves working with you. Start with a bright conversation, make the candidate comfortable by sharing something interesting about you or ask the candidates some questions where they can start off talking about something that they enjoyed doing lately other than work.
Focus on getting the best out of your candidates
Don’t let technology limit you in getting to know your candidates. There are companies who won’t make a hiring decision until they meet with the candidates face to face. Yet, there are companies who do all the interviews via videos and still make the hiring decision. In order to rely on your video interviews, you need to focus on getting the best out of your candidates. It is about preparing your candidates ahead of time in terms of what to expect in this video interview and how to nail it. Be structured, set expectations and provide room to breathe for the candidate just like you do in an in-person interview.
Don’t be biased
Ok. It is a general tendency for all to talk by looking at the computer screen and not the camera during a video call. No brainer. And you know on the receiving end, it might seem like the candidate is not looking at you. Don’t be biased by overthinking that candidate didn’t make any eye contact or was shy or was nervous. Rather focus on their experience, personality, attributes, and research that did to learn more about the opportunity and the company.
Video Interview Tips for Recruiters
Recruiters have a great role in helping candidates, prepping both hiring managers and candidates to nail the video interviews. Below are some tips to help ease the process.
Be a mentor and a facilitator
Help the candidates and hiring manager throughout the process, that starts with helping them learn how to use the video interview platform, sharing some tips on how to make it work, what to expect and what to do when things go wrong. Preparation is key, so advice the candidates to do a test run. And if there are any technical issues help them connect with the helpdesk and get it fixed ahead of time that way the candidate doesn’t have to go with a panic mode. Be a facilitator and that is all about being there when in need and making sure all the pieces are in the right place.
Set and meet the expectation
Setting the expectation is a standard process but meeting the expectation is key. Make sure the candidates know what to expect and hiring managers are providing the same experience and meeting the expectations during the interviews. Let the hiring managers know what you informed the candidates about the process is going to be, how many interviewers, what type of questions get asked, how long the interview is going to be and what the hiring managers looking for etc and have hiring managers stick to it, that way candidates will feel comfortable throughout.
For more recruiting and interview insights, join us in San Francisco this January 30 - February 1, 2019, at #SRSC where talent acquisition leaders connect to leverage emerging recruiting practices.
Nisha Raghavan is the Talent Attraction and Employer Branding Specialist at the American Heart Association. Prior to this, she worked in the telecommunications and media industry to help attract, engage and retain talent. She writes about her Global HR experiences at her blog Your HR Buddy!! Connect with her on LinkedIn and on Twitter at @TheHrbuddy