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5 top tips: video vs. face-to-face interviews

5 top tips: video vs. face-to-face interviews

Skype, Zoom, GoToMeeting, Webex, Lifesize Go or even WhatsApp – chances are that you will have encountered a video interview. And with Coronavirus now forcing more people to work from home, hiring managers will be using video even more as their tool of choice.

Yet while this type of interaction is growing in popularity, interviewees can often get fazed by the experience. The older Gen X/Baby Boomer generation in particular can be a little less comfortable with technology than their Gen Y counterparts. But irrespective of your age, you will likely have to tackle both video and face-to-face interviews as part of the interview process.

So how do you prepare for both? Here are our top tips to calm your pre-interview nerves:

  1. Do your homework

As with any interview, you need to research the company. If you’ve been provided with a job description, go through all the essential skills required for the role – think of concrete examples as you’ll be asked competency-based questions. So you need to have pre-prepared answers!

  1. Be personable

A face-to-face scenario will give you more opportunity to connect with the interviewer. They will be looking for clues to see that you fit in with their team and company culture. In both scenarios make sure you smile and come across as friendly. This is even more important on video as you won’t benefit from the proximity with the person.

  1. Dress appropriately

Smart casual business attire is usually the rule of thumb. A dishevelled appearance will do you no favours. If you’re not meeting in person, don’t fall into the trap of wearing a tatty t-shirt – people will notice! If at home, make sure there are no distractions in the background.

  1. Focus on body language

You must always keep calm. Always listen carefully, slow down when you answer and don’t fidget. It’s easy to get nervous and jumble your words. If on video, check to see that the interviewer can hear you clearly. If in person, be polite to everyone you meet, especially the receptionist. And always offer a firm handshake.  

  1. End on a high

Last impressions also count, so thank your interviewer and tell them how much you enjoyed talking to them. In both cases, this is the time to ask any questions about the role or company. If not previously mentioned, find out what the next steps are.  

For video interviews only, be sure to test your equipment beforehand. You could even do a dress rehearsal with a friend, for example a Skype call. YouTube videos are also a good source of information and advice.

Both face-to-face and video interview can be daunting, but if you stick to the 5 points above, you’ll improve your chances of landing that much sought after job.

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