Since the pandemic, we have relied on technology more than ever. School, work, and now job interviews have become remote tasks. This sudden shift has changed the way we do everything and might have a long-lasting effect on how we work in the future. For many, we have to adapt to the changing environment to succeed. Job interviews are stressful as is, but with a shift towards a digital format, new formalities need to be taken into account.
Here are some tips and tricks to help you secure that job you are interviewing for in this evolving application process.
Understand the role and responsibilities of the position you are applying for. Even if the job you are looking for is not a remote position, most likely the onboarding experience will be virtual. This will pose a challenge for both the applicant and the interviewer. In a virtual space, interactions are not the same and can make it difficult to fully understand one another.
Before the interview:
Prepare your space and realize possible issues before they occur. Before your virtual interview, be aware of your surroundings. The background space should be neutral and not distracting. Try out a white or blank background so the interviewer is more focused on you than where you are. If you are having trouble finding a proper area to perform your interview, check out SJU’s virtual background selection. Be conscious of surrounding noises and interruptions. Plan ahead by making your roommates aware of the timeframe of your interview. Try out a headset to avoid unwanted sounds. Check your internet connection beforehand and reduce bandwidth occupancy.
2. Practice makes perfect
You don’t want nerves to occupy the interview, so focus on what you plan to discuss ahead of time. Don’t get caught off guard and practice as many questions and scenarios as you can. You may have multiple interviewers and will need to practice how to address multiple individuals virtually. Ask a friend to perform a mock interview or check out SJU’s career center for help. Set up a mock interview, touch up a resume, and get advice on what to expect by contacting email@example.com or visiting the career center at 5800 City Avenue.
During the interview:
1. Look presentable
People tend to get too comfortable with a virtual space rather than in person. Although the interviewer will not be able to physically see you, presentation is still important. Clothing choice and hygiene should be considered as if you were meeting in person. Understand the dress code for the position and show that you made an effort to take the role professionally.
In addition, set the camera so that it is angled appropriately to show the top of your head and the width of your shoulders. Also, set up the lighting so that your face is not too bright or too dark and employers can see your face. You want to make sure the recruiter can see your professionalism throughout the Zoom interview.
2. Avoid distractions
One gets easily distracted when using a computer. It’s easy to navigate through the internet, message people, and check emails while you’re in a meeting. However, when you’re trying to have a meaningful conversation, it is important to focus completely on the recruiter so that you can answer questions properly and truly comprehend what they’re saying. Also, try not to look at yourself during the interview. We all want to look our best, but when it can be hard to impress employers when you’re constantly fixing your hair or your tie during the interview.
After the interview:
You did it! Reflect on the interview. What worked? What didn’t work? Keep it in mind for future interviews. Finally, remember to thank the employer for meeting with you. Try to include some specific takeaways from your interview, so that they recognize that you were paying attention.