Preparation is the Key for the New Face of Interviewing

You're hired

My last post, The New Face of Interviewing, I talked about a new type of interviews that I have just learned about.  Pre-recorded, time-shifted and automated interviews are part of the new recruitment.  Rather than having the interviewer and candidate communicating in real-time and with one another, the candidate logs on into a program provided by the company and answered the questions while being recorded.

There are pros and cons to the method for both the employer and candidate, but for the employer the pros far outweigh the cons.  But just like any other interview the candidate needs to practice and be prepared.  I have listed some considerations the candidate needs to be aware of in order to be ace the interview and get hired. 

  • Complete the practice interview session—learn how you look and sound on video; learn and understand the technology, so you are concentrating on the questions and not on the technology.
  • Look at the recording to see what needs to be adjusted—check the volume level.  Look at the lighting, a bright room with soft lighting works best.  Don’t use the monitor as a lighting source, instead use a desk lamp and adjust it to get the best resolution.  The background should be simple with nothing distracting.  Adjust the monitor for glare from your glasses.  Your glasses should be cleaned as spots can show up on video.  You should have a close up of your head and shoulders.
  • Look directly into the camera—don’t look all around the  room, and make sure you smile and look friendly.  Have your webcam located so that you are looking directly at instead of looking down or looking up at it.
  • Use a quiet area where you can be uninterrupted—keep family and pets out of the area and making noise.
  • Before you go “live” check all your connections— make sure all the equipment is working and you have a reliable internet connection.  If you are using a laptop, keep it plugged into an outlet instead of running on battery power.  Turn off alerts on your computer, such as email alerts.
  • Dress appropriately for an interview—it is an interview so dress as you would for  face-to-face interviews.  When practicing the session where the outfit you plan to wear.  Some colors and patterns don’t look good on video, such as white. 
  • Don’t read your answers directly from your notes—look at the camera as you would an interviewer.  Smile and limit the use of your hands.
  • Have everything you need located conveniently around you where you can get access to them without shuffling papers.  Including your questions to ask the interviewer.
  • Avoid nervous habits—don’t click your pen; tap your pencil, or other annoying activities.  The same goes for eating or drinking or chewing gum.  If you wouldn’t do it on an interview, don’t do it here.  Because you are alone in the room, it’s easy to forget that you are actually being interviewed.
  • Watch your posture—sit up straight and lean slightly in to look interested and engaged.
  • Relax and breathe—focus on the value you bring to the employer and not on the technology.  

Some of the stress of a face-to-face interview has been removed by a pre-recorded interview.  Instead of interviewing at the employer’s office, you are in the comfort and safety of your own home.  You don’t have to worry about getting stuck in traffic or finding a parking place.  You can’t be late; you are doing this interview when it’s convenient for you.   You can now concentrate on your answers and your unique value proposition.  And getting a message saying:  You’re hired!

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