Updated: Apr 19, 2021
Now that markets across Europe are beginning to resume normal business operations, more job vacancies are becoming available, as companies seek to adapt to a changing market. The online interview will become a prominent feature of this new economy.
Prior to moving to Spain to work as an Interview Coach I worked as a Financial Recruitment Consultant, serving clients in Ireland and London. My clients were banks, insurance companies and asset managers who sought to expand their workforce with skilled candidates.
Often I recruited staff from overseas territories like Spain, and my UK or Ireland-based clients were usually content to conduct the first interview over video call. This meant that I became very experienced at advising candidates on how to prepare for an interview that was not face-to-face.
Here is my advice for conducting an online interview:
1. Research the company you are interviewing with and prepare an insightful answer as to why you want to work for them. This is particularly important since you can’t meet them in person and attest to their amazing facilities. Think of their market reputation and what value they can add to you.
2. Use their names a lot, especially if you are being interviewed by more than one person. This creates a warm atmosphere on the call, and helps make the interview more personal to overcome your physical separation. It also demonstrates your emotional intelligence and interpersonal skills.
3. Allow them time to speak and wait until you are certain they have finished speaking. It can be difficult to know exactly when the interviewer has stopped speaking, because of the speed of their internet connection and unfamiliarity with their speaking syle. Try not to cut them off by talking prematurely!
4. Use positive body language, such as looking into the camera to maintain eye contact, nodding while they are speaking to show approval and open hand gestures when you are explaining to stimulate dynamic responses. Smile a lot and be happy!
5. Provide evidence of your achievements to hold your audience’s attention. It is more difficult for your interviewer to maintain their engagement with you over a webcam, so keep them interested by providing short, fact-based responses which demonstrate the key things you have achieved. They will come to life if you mention the “10 direct reports you managed while replacing the legacy payments system in 2019”. Use details to ensure they remember your key achievements.
6. Prepare relevant questions for them, which you can ask at the right time. Since the online interview is slightly less formal than a face-to-face meeting, it is appropriate for you to ask more questions, to show that you have deeply considered the role and the company.
Thanks for reading and don’t hesitate to contact me if you want to continue the conversation!