Making A Good Impression During A Video Interview

Download Making A Good Impression During A Video Interview

Post on 22-Apr-2015




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Video interviews are no longer a trend but rather an important human resources tool and the new way of performing first-round interviews. Thanks to programs like Skype that make this technology easy, affordable and efficient, video interviews are only going to improve and grow in their usage. Learn Jim Lord's and Sami Barry's tips for making sure your video interview goes smoothly.


  • 1. NOVEMBER 2012 Tips for Making a Good Impression During a Video Interview I f you are a job seeker or a hiring manager, you know that video interviews are no longer considered a trend in hiring. They have become an important human resources tool and the new way of performing rst-round job interviews. Their popularity is only going to increase, especially when companies like Skype are making this technology easier, more aordable and more ecient.Take a few moments to consider the benets of conducting Skype interviews for hiring organizations. This technology saves them time and money by decreasing the amount of time that hiring managers spend performing rst interviews only to weed out non-qualied job applicants. It also saves on interviewing costs of candidates who are not local and who would have to travel to interviews. Another valuable benet is that there is now a recording feature on Skype which allows hiring managers to share video interviews with colleagues and clients, thus saving other people time and cutting additional costs.These advantages are widely known in most business sectors. In 2010, only 10% of companies were using video as part of their hiring processes. Current statistics show that 42% of organizations are utilizing Skype for rst-round interviews of prospective employees, a signicant increase in just two years. With numbers like these and with technology advancing so quickly, knowing how to do video interviews is a critical skill for todays job seekers.As executive search consultants, we understand the value of this technology and have performed initial interviews with candidates via Skype at client requests. Although we are still improving our own skills at using Skype, below are things that we found are important for making a good impression during a video interview.Skype Set Up: If you are new to setting up Skype on your computer, the download is very easy. The part you have to give more thought to is your Skype Name. This should be treated the same as your email address. Choose a user name that is professional. While the most common user name on Skype is simply a persons name, yours may not be available. If that is the case, Charles Purdy, senior editor and career expert with, recommends that you try your name combined with your industry or profession.Technical Set Up: Make sure your internet speed is sucient and that the video and audio sync correctly. If your wireless connection is slow, you may want to try to plug your computer directly into the Internet cable. A slow connection can cause glitches in video and audio which can be distracting. Set your camera up so that you are speaking directly to it while still looking at the computer screen. This will promote a more natural face-to-face conversation. Otherwise, you will have to choose between speaking to the camera and viewing the other party. You also want to position the camera so that an interviewer can see you from the waist up, including your hands. This is important for understanding body language and non-verbal cues. Keep your computer plugged in so that you do not run out of battery. Close other programs on your computer including your email so that they do not make noises. Also, turn your cell phone on silent. In case of technical diculties, have your phone nearby in case the interview mode changes.
  • 2. NOVEMBER 2012 Lighting: Ensure that you have adequate lighting and do not appear to be sitting in the dark. Do not over light your area or use high-powered uorescent lighting because they can make you appear washed out. Do not sit with a window or a light behind you. If you have to sit with a window behind you, use adequate curtains or shades. Otherwise, there will be a glare and you will appear as a silhouette. Having a lamp about 4 6 feet in front of you is a good option because it can balance the lighting. Setting & Dress: Skype from a quiet location, preferably sitting at a desk or conference table. Give attention to your background as you do not want to show a cluttered oce or that you are in a coee shop or caf. If you are Skyping from your home, make sure your home telephone is turned o and there are no children or pets that could interrupt you. Dress professionally as if you are interviewing in person. Do not just wear a shirt and tie as you never know if you might have to stand up during the interview. Solid colors work best when video interviewing and the best colors to wear are usually shades of blue. Prints and stripes do not always show up well and bright hues may pick up too much color which will make you appear pale. Communication: Tell the other party if it is your rst time doing a video interview. It is better to be honest than to appear uncomfortable or nervous. Remember to look at the camera instead of the other persons picture. Otherwise, they will not see you looking directly at them. This is dicult to get used to the rst few times. Seeing yourself on the screen can be distracting so you may want to cover the view of yourself. Also, remember not to look at yourself on the screen and make adjustments to your hair or face. This is also something that takes a few times to get accustomed to. Reactions translate very dierently on-screen so it is important to compensate with extra enthusiasm and concise answers. Talk slowly and succinctly, and wait until the other person is done speaking before you reply. Remember that nothing is more engaging than a friendly expression or smile. Have fun and try to be yourself. Technology works best when it is in the background and you can focus on the conversation. Taking all of these tips into consideration, be sure to do a trial run with a friend or colleague a few days before an interview to gather their constructive criticism on all of the above, including the volume of your voice. And make sure you do it from the same location you will be interviewing from. Although interviewing candidates by video cannot replace face-to-face meetings, it provides organizations immense benets, especially for rst-round interviews. This technology is here to stay and is only going to improve and grow in its usage. So, as a job seeker, if you think that it is unlikely that you will ever have to do a video interview, think again. You may be doing it sooner than you think.HELBLING & ASSOCIATES, INC. RETAINED EXECUTIVE SEARCH C o n s t r u c t i o n F a c i l i t i e s M a n a g e m e n t R e a l E s t a t e E n g i n e e r i n gPittsburgh 724.935.7500