Remote interviewing plays a key role in hiring at Culture Amp. Given the recent transition to work-from-home requirements, many other companies are adjusting their interview format.
Many candidates and interviewers will likely experience video interviews for the first time. But whether you are a seasoned or a beginner remote interviewer, Culture Amp’s pro tips will help you ensure you’re at the top of your game, even from the comfort of your home.
1. Find a quiet place
Find a quiet place free of distractions like roommates, pets, dirty dishes, or a television. This may be difficult sometimes, so if you need to take a call in a public or loud place, let your interviewer know in advance. Make the other people around you aware of it so that you can create mutual respect for the fact that you’re sharing space during an important meeting.
To keep things quiet, you can moderate the noise with equipment and techniques. Try to use decent headphones. It helps reduce the noise and distractions around you. Even more importantly, it signals to the interviewer that no one else can hear their voice and that your conversation remains confidential. Also, when possible, mute yourself while your interviewer is talking so they aren’t distracted by any background noise coming from your end.
2. Interruptions happen
No matter how well you prepare your space, interruptions do happen. There’s no need to feel embarrassed or annoyed. This is an opportunity to show a bit of vulnerability and authenticity, and it could create a moment of connection with your interviewer outside of the standard interview interactions. Any interviewer at Culture Amp would understand and probably enjoy discovering a part of your true self outside of the camera’s view.
3. Clear space, clear mind
Get into the space you’re using for the interview 10 minutes before the call. Do a little tidying - the things behind you say something about you, and removing some clutter will help you think more clearly and minimize distractions. This also reduces the chances of your interviewer being distracted by anything untoward in the background.
4. Lights, camera, action!
It can be challenging to get a deep personal connection via video. To ensure you make an impact on your interviewer, make sure your face is well-lit. This will allow them to see your facial expressions and body language.
When setting up, take the time to try a couple of different positions. To help with lighting, try not to sit with a window or source of light in your back, which would leave your face in the dark, or a bright lamp to the side, which would only illuminate one side of your face and cast a shadow on the other side. The best option would be to sit facing a window or source of light, as long as it isn’t blinding or bothering you. Once you feel comfortable with your setup and your face is lit to a Spielbergian level, it’s time to shine. Sit close to the camera so that your face fills most of the screen, and look straight down the barrel as much as possible.
5. Practice active listening
One of the downsides of video interviewing is that it’s harder to come across as deeply interested. To show that you’re engaged in the conversation with your interviewer, practice “active listening” where possible. In short, this means actively listening and responding to what they’re saying.
If you’re not usually overtly physically expressive, summarize what you hear from your interview to demonstrate understanding. This can also help you develop insightful follow-up questions.
If you want to learn more about active listening, we recommend these resources from Indeed and Lifelabs.
Video interview skills for now and for the future
These uncertain times require many of us to adapt both how we work and how we get that work. Building your video interviewing skills will be important to get your next job and succeed in an increasingly remote working environment.