How to Ace an Online Interview?

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Online Interview

With the advent of the hyper-connected digital age, online interviews have become an integral part of our lives. Especially, after the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, many personal interviews are now being conducted online only. The internet has made it easier for companies and organisations to carry out their recruitment processes online. In this lockdown period, the best way to connect a personal interview is through video conferencing. If you are preparing for an online interview, this blog brings you the top tips and strategies which can help you create a great impression on your employer and get selected for your dream job! 

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What is an Online Interview?

An online interview is one that is done remotely using a chat, video, or audio platform. The online interview, often known as a digital interview, is primarily defined by the technology or platform utilised to conduct the interview. Employers can conduct online interviews in a variety of ways. Before your interview, make sure to ask the interviewer what type of interview you may expect. This includes determining whether the call will have audio, video, or both. The following are some examples of typical forms of online interviews:

Live Video

A video call is the most popular form of online interview. The interview will be conducted over a medium such as Skype, Zoom, or Google Hangouts. This is comparable to a face-to-face interview, but it allows a firm to accommodate distant applicants who are unable to go to the office for an in-person encounter.

Video Resume 

Video resumes are another way of screening that companies may use instead of a traditional interview. A recruiter develops a set of rules for the video and asks candidates to submit an introduction – similar to an elevator pitch. While you may receive a few well-rehearsed responses, it will provide you with a feeling of communication skills, confidence, and body language.

Pre Recorded Video 

Candidates are given a few minutes to review interview questions before recording their responses for the recruiter to review at their leisure. This format, often known as a one-way video interview, generally contains a time frame and can be curated to include a specific number of re-do recordings based on the company’s needs. The questions are frequently used as an initial screening tool for companies and maybe simply coupled with a skills evaluation.

Skill Assessment

An online coding interview or simulation of work-related skills might provide recruiters with a more complete picture of a candidate’s abilities than a typical job interview. As previously stated, traditional interviews do not predict performance. Rather, utilising an online interview platform to assess job-related abilities in context is the ideal approach to identify the perfect new recruit.

Live Chat

Chat-based recruiting is becoming increasingly popular as more Millennials and Generation Z individuals enter the labour market. To simplify pre-screening and early-stage interviews in the recruiting process, recruiters are turning to platforms like WeChat, Whatsapp, and Facebook Messenger.

Chatbot 

AI recruiting technologies, such as Alorica, can automate the first applicant screening process and allow candidates to provide video and audio answers.

Note: The online interviewing arena is dominated by video call interviews at the moment, but the key to making these platforms work for you is understanding how to utilise these tools wisely.

Courtesy: Warikoo

Tips to Ace an Online Interview

An online interview through Zoom, Google Meet, or any other platform is not the same as meeting in person. But you don’t have to let that truth ruin your chances of landing a job. To help you ace your next video interview and make it go as smoothly as possible, we’ve compiled a list of pro-tips that are listed and described below:

online interview tips
Courtesy: Twitter

The Standard Rules Continue to Apply

Just because you’re on video doesn’t give you a licence to ignore your looks. The professional trend toward casual, devil-may-care dress does not and should not extend to your choice of clothes for a video job interview. Dress one level up from the company’s standard outfit. So, if your workplace prefers collared shirts, select that option, but also put on a jacket and your work shoes. Also, wear basic colours because stripes and intricate patterns might appear terrible on camera.

Eliminate Distractions

Close your room’s door and windows. Turn off the TV in the next room. Turn off your phone (unless you’re using it for the meeting). To ace your online interview, be sure that the only window open on your computer screen is the video platform you’re utilising. Turn off all pop-ups and eliminate all kinds of distractions in your ecosystem if you don’t want to lose your train of thought throughout the online interview.

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Select the Right Location 

One of the most essential factors to consider while appearing for an online interview is finding the right location. It is vital that you choose a peaceful environment without minimal disturbance. Hindrances during the video call will seem unprofessional, thus, you must try to opt a location with minimal background noise. Your chosen spot for the video call must have speedy internet connectivity otherwise it will be difficult to communicate. It is advisable to choose a room with good lighting as well as a professionally appropriate background.

Choose a Good Source of Lighting 

In a home setting, getting excellent lighting for video might be challenging, however, you should ideally aim for the following:

  • Get enough light so you don’t appear like you’re hiding in the dark, but not so much that it causes glare on your eyeglasses.
  • If feasible, place two lights on a diagonal in front of you, one to your right and one to your left. Table lights are quite adequate.
  • Using natural light through a window would also work fine. 
  • Avoid using fluorescent lights or other “cool” lighting sources.

Practice, Practice, & Practice

You will need to practise your interviewing approach after you have tested the online interviewing technology. Assign someone you know the task of asking you the practise interview questions via video conference. Be cautious of your computer’s tendency to lag and avoid talking over the other person. Practice paying close attention and speaking slowly and clearly. The more practise you have, the more assured you’ll be on the real online interview day.

Conduct a Mock Interview

To efficiently prepare for an online interview, you must conduct a mock interview with a friend through video conferencing. A mock interview can help you identify the points where you might face an issue during the video call. Ask a friend to do video conferencing with you and give them a list of questions that are commonly asked during an interview. Then, seek feedback from them and analyse where you need more practice. 

Check your Video Conferencing System

Technology is dual-faced, either it can do wonders or things can go completely haywire. Online interviews are usually conducted via webcam and video conferencing which means that you will need a stable internet connection to ensure that you don’t get disconnected during the interview. Also, while preparing for your video platform, you must also understand the workings of the platform you are using for video conferencing. Before the interview, check all the equipment and monitor the audio and video quality to ensure that you are clearly visible and audible during the interview.

Keep a Copy of Resume Within Reach 

During the video interview, you cannot leave the screen even for a moment. The interviewer generally ask questions from the candidate’s resume thus it is important to keep a copy of your resume by your side. Further, you might be asked to tell your academic grades during graduation or any other details related to your candidates and having a resume within your reach, you can easily answer such questions. 

Keep a Check on Body Language

Opt for the set up of a study table for the interview and avoid taking it on a couch or bean bag. Keep a check on your body language and maintain good eye contact throughout the interview. Also, making eye contact during an online interview is quite tricky since if you are looking at the screen, the interviewer will see you looking elsewhere. Thus, look at the camera during the video interview and focus your attention on the interviewer.

No Interference 

Any disturbance during the interview will leave an unprofessional impact on the interviewer and it will also reflect your laid back attitude. Tell your family members and pets not to disturb you and choose a quiet room and turn off the electronics that might disrupt your focus during the online interview.

Prepare for Common Interview Questions & Answers

Do not just show up at the given time for the online interview but start gearing up for it at least a few days before. Preparing for different questions does not mean that you mug up answers as it might make you sound robotic and make the conversation mundane. But try making pointers for the common interview questions like, “where do you see yourself in 5 years?” or “what are your hobbies?”, “why should we hire you?”, amongst others. It is always appreciated to ask questions to the interviewer related to the role you have applied for as it will exhibit your interest in the job profile.

Make a Cheat Note

Remember that the interviewer cannot see what is not on camera, so make the most of your interview area. Stick a cheat sheet having notes, queries, or required inspiration right to your camera’s screen or the wall behind it.  The interviewer on the other end will never know of this trick.

Courtesy: Dr. Sandeep Patil

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We hope that this blog provided you with key preparation and practice tips for an online interview. Struggling with creating an impressive resume? Sign up for an e-meeting with our Leverage Edu experts and we will assist you in resume structuring and profiling to ensure that you get selected for your dream job!

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