A face-to-face interview is often the ideal scenario when you’re interviewing for a new job. However, it’s not always possible or practical, and sometimes you just don’t have a choice. Many interviews today are conducted over the phone, while others use video. Phone interviews are often used as a first-round screening, followed up by a face-to-face interview if you’re successful. Video interviews can feel almost like face-to-face interviews if they’re live, but they can also involve recording your answers.
If you’re not familiar with interviews that aren’t face-to-face or you haven’t had one for a while, they can feel intimidating. Following a few rules for best practice can help you to prepare and nail your interview.
Choose the Right Location
Getting set up for your interview is the first thing to consider. You need an appropriate place to conduct your interview, where you won’t be disturbed. You will also need to make sure you’ll have a good phone reception or internet connection to avoid any disruptions. For most people, a quiet room at home will be suitable. If this isn’t possible, some libraries have booths or rooms where you can carry out interviews. Other options might include using a friend’s house or even renting a meeting room.
Use Notes – But Don’t Rely on Them Too Much
A phone or video interview gives you the opportunity to make some notes and refer to them during the interview. It’s something that you can’t really do in a face-to-face interview, so it can give you an advantage. You can write down some questions to ask or some answers to questions that you might expect. However, it’s important not to rely too heavily on your notes, particularly during a video interview. You don’t want to be distracted while you try to scan through your notes, and you don’t want to sound too much like you’re reading out preprepared answers.
Even if your interviewers aren’t going to see you, dressing up for your interview can help you. What you’re wearing does change how you feel and your attitude, and a smart outfit could give you the confidence and professionalism that you need. It’s also necessary if you’re doing a video interview; and don’t be tempted to only dress smartly from the waist up – you never know if you’ll need to stand up.
Put on a Smile
Your tone of voice is especially important when talking over the phone, and it’s something to consider in video interviews too. If you don’t sound enthusiastic about the role, you could have trouble getting the interviewer to pay attention to you. Smiling is a great way to make yourself sound more upbeat, and it doesn’t even need to be a real smile.
Treat It Seriously
You might not be meeting your interviewer in person, but it’s still a real interview. It’s important to prepare yourself, to have your CV at hand, and to treat it as seriously as any other interview. Being at home might help you to relax a bit, and you can take advantage of that, but try not to be too casual.
Phone and video interviews can be really convenient, allowing you to interview without leaving your house. It’s still necessary to take them seriously, even if you’re not meeting anyone face-to-face.