In 1482, Leonardo Da Vinci sent the first resume. It took mankind 500 years and the advent of cheap internet to finally make an alternative to the resume become a reality. There are several products now in the market that help clients conduct interviews and save them to video for hiring evaluation. Even without these tools, the days of the first interview being in person are long gone. Most HR departments have gotten with the times and embraced Skype or Google Hangouts. No doubt about it, if you are looking for a job (at least in the technology sector) chances are you are going to be put on a camera. Thankfully there are lots of good materials on the internet that help prepare job seekers. Below are our recommendations on how to have the Perfect Interview
The Perfect SKYPE Interview
- Make a trial runs with your camera with a friend or colleague, the last thing you want to be doing is troubleshooting your camera with your future employer waiting.
- Confirm you have the correct Skype Address or Email of the caller. If they are calling you, don't forget to add the caller to your Contacts lists. As a Agency, I can't tell you how many panic calls I get because candidate forgets to press 'Accept' on the contact and the Interviewer can't reach them at the designated time.
- Check your surroundings closely. Is the area behind you clean and attractive? Wandering pets, questionable art, or distracting television sets will take the Hiring Managers focus away from you. If possible find a plain wall to face your camera at. It is completely worth it to move your PC, or conduct your interview in another room if it lands you that new dream job.
- Gather your thoughts, read the job description, review the companies website. You want to connect with them and spending 15 minutes to organize your thoughts can be make all the difference in the world.
- Check your appearance. Are you dressed and groomed appropriately for the company your interviewing with?
- Adjust your chair height or move your camera/cellphone to ensure your eyes are at camera level and at arms length away.
- If using a mobile phone, turn it horizontally.
- Focus on keeping your eyes on the camera—not your picture-in-picture view yourself. If on a PC, a simple trick is to move the Skype window (and even your image of yourself) as close to the camera as possible. The less your eyes wander from the lens the better.
- SLOW DOWN-- Pauses are great ways to get the interviewer to respond and communicate with you. A conversation is what you want, not dictation.
- Focus on telling your story, not your skills. For each job or skill you cover with the Interviewer, try and provide perspective around how, when, or why.
- Leave as soon as the interview is finished. Making small talk after an interview can lead to problems.
- Thank the interviewer for giving you the opportunity
- Send a polite and professional follow up thank you letter.