The Perks of Virtual Interviews
Virtual Interviews Are Here to Stay
The COVID-19 pandemic across the world has resulted in an unprecedented surge in online video conferencing as millions of employees are forced to work from home during this crisis. Video conferencing is now being used routinely for staff meetings, schooling, church services, and even job interviews. As a full-service staffing agency, HIM Connections has helped our clients overcome several barriers imposed by the coronavirus including the ability to conduct and participate in job interviews. The feedback we have received from virtual interviewers and interviewees is overwhelmingly positive—in fact, many employers are planning to continue conducting certain virtual interviews after the coronavirus crisis has passed.
Benefits of Virtual Interviews
Rather than seeing virtual interviews as being less than ideal, keep in mind there are unique perks to video conferencing. For employers and job seekers alike, virtual interviews save time and money. For employers, conducting virtual interviews eliminates many of the distractions that can interfere with an in-person interview, such as being interrupted by coworkers popping into your office. For many job seekers, virtual interviews eliminate the hassle of taking time off from (or finding coverage for) your current job. Virtual interviews can also result in major savings on travel expenses. For these reasons and others, we believe virtual interviews will become a “new normal” for many companies.
The Key to a Successful Virtual Interview
Preparation is the key to a successful virtual interview. There are several factors interviewers and interviewees should consider when getting ready for a virtual interview:
Dress for Success
When it comes to virtual interviews, first impressions still matter—even during a pandemic. While working from home likely means you are not required to dress up each day, it is important to dress the part when conducting and participating in virtual interviews. Your standard interview dress code still applies to virtual interviews, and we believe preparing physically in this way will also help you be better prepared mentally. Even though it may seem tempting, interviewing in pajamas or workout attire is never appropriate!
Ensure Your Technology Works
Be familiar with the platform you are using for your virtual interview. Whether you are using Zoom, GoToMeeting, Skype or any other video conferencing platform, ensure your computer is equipped to run it properly. This means downloading any necessary applications or software in advance of your interview and ensuring your camera and microphone function properly. We advise our clients and candidates to schedule a trial run with a friend or family member ahead of an interview to ensure this so that adjustments can be made before the scheduled interview. Do not forget to have your device charged fully, and ideally on a power supply, in the event your virtual interview is lengthy!
Be in a Controlled Environment
Employers and job seekers should always be respectful of one another’s time and attention. When it comes to a virtual interview, this means being in a quiet environment free of distractions and interruptions. While everyone understands that we are living in unprecedented times when spouses, children, and pets are all at home together, take any reasonable steps you can to ensure your interview is not interrupted. Interview participants should be able to focus on each other and what is being communicated—not background noise or distractions. To achieve a peaceful interview environment, you may need to consider scheduling the interview during your child’s typical nap time, participating in the interview from a remote area of your home or even from your parked car. Even though you cannot control every aspect of your environment, it is important to make a strong effort to allow your focus to be solely on your interview.
Have a Contingency Plan
Sometimes technology fails—you could experience an internet outage, a computer issue or your video conferencing provider could have a bandwidth shortage. If you are unable to effectively communicate during your virtual interview, you should have a backup plan. This might include switching to a different video conferencing provider or even conducting the interview by phone. Do not let issues like these upset you—keep your composure and carry on with the interview as if nothing happened. Technological glitches are typically outside of your control and should not be a factor in gauging the success of the interview.
Your Career and the COVID-19 Pandemic
If you are an employer needing to fill positions or a job seeker looking for the perfect role, there is no reason to let the coronavirus stand in the way. Creativity abounds in times like these, and the most forward-thinking will emerge from this crisis better than when they entered it. If you are interested in pursuing growth during this time, contact us today at 888-326-3464. We would love to help you become more comfortable with virtual interviews.