If it has been a while since you interviewed, you may be new to webcam interviewing. Follow these quick tips to make a great impression on-screen.
- Look at the camera, not the screen
It can be confusing, but when you’re looking at your monitor it actually makes the interviewer feel as if you’re looking away. Instead, look directly at the video camera you’re using for your interview. If it is built into the computer, know where it is located and look directly at it. Although you’re not making eye contact in the traditional sense, this is the way that the interviewer perceives that you’re looking at them.
- Be aware of potential interruptions
Since you’re used to living in the house, it can be easy to forget to turn off a phone or not warn family members to give you some privacy. Have a plan for whatever distractions you have in your house, including children and dogs.
- 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. It’s important to get familiar with your own facial expressions when you talk and it also gets rid of some of the camera shyness.
- 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. Shoot your video against a blank wall or a warm one-color background. Clear off your desk or have only awards and certificates in the background.
- Avoid patterned clothing
Wear a shirt that’s business appropriate 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.
- Conduct a mock interview
Being comfortable with the technology prevents the added stress from a possible malfunction. Find a person you trust and use the video conferencing software that you will be using during the interview to conduct a mock interview. You’re bound to make mistakes, so it’s best to practice with someone who can provide honest feedback.
- Test audio and video
Just because your laptop has a built-in video camera and microphone doesn’t mean the quality is up to par. 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. Before the interview, some companies may send their own video devices to applicants.
- Add extra enthusiasm
Any news announcer will tell you 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.