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Virtual interview tips for your job search


by Wiktoria Stretskite

When looking for a job in IT, you should prepare for a virtual interview. Companies that hire remote workers have no alternative. Those that hire in-house specialists arrange calls in video messengers to save time. Plus, it’s their chance to check how the candidate can interact with remote colleagues. Let’s analyze which skills you should demonstrate to produce the best impression during a video interview.

Test your technology

Get to know in advance which software your potential employer will be using. It can be Zoom, Google Hangouts, FaceTime, Skype or any other app that is popular in your and their regions. Make sure the video and audio are ok. Place your camera against a neutral background. Provide enough light and place it strategically so that the interviewer can see your face well. Technical issues tend to take place unexpectedly at the last moment. 10 minutes before the call, you should be in your place, ready to start the conversation.

Dress to impress

⅓ of hiring managers understand whether they might be ready to sign a contract with the interviewee or not in the first 90 seconds of their dialog. A typical job search interview lasts for around an hour only because the company representative needs to make sure the specialist has the right skills, experience and mindset.

It’s essential to stick to the company’s dress code. Even though ties and suits have become obsolete in the IT environment, they remain relevant for many companies that belong to other industries but have IT departments. If you know that your potential employer allows its staff to look casual, opt for a blazer or a blouse. To make yourself look more well-groomed, avoid flashing lights or bright colors — they might distract or even annoy the interviewer.

Practice open body language

Here are the vital tips for keeping your body language open:

  • Sit up straight
  • Maintain eye contact
  • Actively smile throughout the call

Around one-half of all HR managers confess that individuals who don’t follow these recommendations have small odds of landing the job. If you look away from the screen or keep your arms crossed, that hints at a lack of confidence.

Before the interview, it would be wise to check how you look on camera. Try to talk to yourself, record a video, watch it and analyze it.

Prepare for the questions

The interviewer will be likely to ask questions about your technical skills, previous work experience and the projects or products that you have completed. On the Internet, you can find lists of the most popular questions for any IT occupation. Think over your answers in advance. Put down the basic information for your answers in bullet points and memorize it, if this technique makes you feel more confident.

Avoid learning your answers parrot-fashion. Experienced interviewers can easily tell scripted answers from genuine ones. Companies look for flexible employees who can promptly adapt to various situations. They appreciate it when their team members can figuratively speaking, play by ear.

Follow up

Professionals with little experience often think that they failed to impress the employer if the latter doesn't get in touch with them. In fact, managers might be too busy to react quickly. They might make a short list of candidates whom they liked the most and put it aside for a while. They will be only grateful if you reach out to them in a couple of days to remind them about yourself. You’ll prove that you’re genuinely interested in the position and have good communication skills. You’ll show that you’ll be a proactive team member — and that’s a highly valuable asset.