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Tips On How To Succeed in a Video Conference Interview

4th June 2020

Preparing for a video conference interview takes time and consideration. You’ll hopefully have reviewed the Grafton Banks standard Interview Tips and the guide to Competency Based and Aptitude Test Interviewing on our website, and you’ve already done your research on the firm and their company accounts, if available.

To supplement those guides here are our tips to help you succeed in a video conference interview.

  1. Check your Equipment

    Checking your tools is your first priority. Ensure you’ve got enough power in your laptop, that you’ve got a good internet connection and that you’re close enough to your booster to receive a good signal. Test your camera/audio quality and ensure you’ve got a pen/paper handy.

  2. Remove all distractions

    If your video conferencing interview is taking place at home, then make sure you limit any possible interruptions before the interview. That goes for dogs, children, television, music, phones, oven timer, or doorbell . Apple watches should be put on silent, and it goes without say that you shouldn’t glance at any texts or messages that pop up. You should aim to be alone and in a quiet room when the interview takes place, ask any flatmates or family not to disturb you and consider traffic noise if you’re opening a window.

  3. Set the scene

    Since your home and your room are the backdrop for the interview, spend some time creating a simple and professional background, without any clutter. Check what’s in view of your camera and temporarily remove any posters that don’t tally with a working environment, although smart pictures and paintings are fine. Check you have good lighting on your face and not just in the background (which will make it difficult for the interviewer to see your face).

  4. Look at the camera

    Regular eye contact with your interviewer is important. It’s a common habit to look at the interviewer on the computer monitor instead of the actual camera, but if you don’t look at the camera it will look like you’re looking away from the interviewer. If you find this difficult then try putting a picture behind your camera which will make it feel like you’re talking to an actual person when you are looking at the camera.

  5. Look smart

    You may be at home, but dress like you would if you were participating in a face to face interview - it will make you look and feel more professional. We advise a smart shirt, dress or blouse.

  6. Be concise in your answers and don’t talk over people.

    It’s great to be enthusiastic during your interview, but it can really infuriate an interviewer if you talk over them, interrupt their question, and don’t let them finish what they’re saying. Equally, ensuring your answers are concise, not waffling, is vital.

  7. Consider your body language

    Although you’re not in the same room as your interviewer physically, body language remains important. Sit up straight, look attentive and enthusiastic. Be aware of the limitations in sound quality and volume in this situation – you want your interviewer to hear you clearly. Don’t cover your mouth, remain conscious of your hand-to-face gestures, and try and minimise enthusiastic hand gestures. Hold a pen to occupy your hands or place your hands on your legs to help stop potentially distracting movements.

  8. Make use of notes, but don’t rely on them too much

    As long as you do it subtly, you can have notes nearby. Use them to help you answer any difficult questions or remember specific facts about the role or company. Avoid using them as a script, or you’ll sound monotonous and you won’t be able to look at the camera at the same time.

  9. Do a practice run

    Rehearsing your answers to popular interview questions as well as general interview techniques is essential for a successful interview, but a video conferencing interview brings its own challenges and therefore more factors need to be added to the mix when rehearsing. You will need to get into the habit of talking out loud when nobody else is in the room so set up your own video conference system prior to the interview and perhaps ask a friend to interview you. After the interview ask your friend to give you some feedback.

Good Luck!

From the Grafton Banks Team

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