Skype interviews becoming more common during hiring, not being prepared can easily keep you out of the running. While meeting via video is time saver, getting past the technological barriers of not speaking face-to-face can be difficult.
Be sure you’re prepared and use Skype to your advantage, experts say. For one, use your computer screen to refer hiring managers to your achievements or provide explanations.
Have a digital portfolio prepared that you can link to during the interview or show the interviewer your screen, you can also send relevant links through the chat function.
Here’s how to conduct a Skype interview:
- Look at the camera, not the screen. When you’re looking at your monitor it actually makes the interviewer feel as if you’re looking away. Look directly at the video camera you’re using for your interview. And although you’re not making eye contact in the traditional sense, this is the way that the interviewer perceives that you’re looking straight at them.
- Avoid interruptions. Since you’re used to your surroundings, it can be easy to forget to turn off a phone or not warn family members to give you some privacy, plan a time to minimise distractions. Remember to prepare as meticulously as for an in-person interview.
- Practice in front of a mirror. During the interview, you can see yourself in the video camera, which can be startling if you’ve never seen yourself speak. Familiarise yourself with what you look like when you are talking, to avoid shocking yourself in your first skype interview.
- Mind the background. Your surroundings can say a lot about how you’ve prepared for the interview, so it’s important to put your best foot forward. Use a blank wall or a warm one-color background. Clear your desk, or have only awards and certificates in the background.
- Avoid patterned clothing. Wear a shirt that’s business casual and complimentary to your skin tone. Avoid patterns that come across as too loud on screen, such as anything floral or bright stripes. Clothing can distract the interviewer from the information conveyed during the conversation, so it’s important to plan your outfit carefully.
- Have a trial run Being comfortable with the technology prevents the added stress from a tech malfunction. Find a person you trust and use Skype to conduct a mock interview. You will make mistakes so getting out of your system now is far better.
- Test equipment. Just because your laptop has a built-in video camera and microphone doesn’t mean the quality is great. Instead, test out the video and audio capabilities on your computer and decide whether you need to buy a headset with a microphone or an attachable video camera.
- 8. Be enthusiastic Any news announcer will tell that your reactions translate differently when on-screen, so it’s important to compensate with extra enthusiasm and concise answers. Additionally, speak succinctly and remember that speed is important, practice speaking more quickly than you normally do, make sure you still clear