When it comes to hiring a freelancer the interview process will often include an online interview. Technology allows freelancers to connect and maintain relationships with their employer(s) without having to be on site at all times. Likewise, employers are able to outsource work to professionals who prefer working from home. The same technology has allowed recruiters to save time by conducting a preliminary video interview before actually meeting face to face with potential freelancers. Sometimes meeting face to face is impossible and a video interview is the only option. No travel is required for the candidate to get to the video interview and the video interview can often be done faster than a face-to-face one.
Be forewarned, a video interview has it’s own set of hurdles. “The Skype interview is not only a tense and complicated thing for the applicant, it can also be really tough on employers as well. The estranged face-to-face nature of it is quite hard to navigate.” (Nicola Ireland, author at Last Minute Writing and Researchpapersuk) So, with that said, here are some video interview tips on how to master the video interview.
Pick A Mutually Beneficial Time
It’s important for both parties to figure out a time that works. Instead of going back and forth to figure out a time. This can be very frustrating and a waste of time. Offer the candidate a few time slot possibilities to choose from or better yet sign up to an app such as Calendly.
Always Have A Backup to the Video Interview
“After spending ages trying to schedule an interview, if the first thing that happens is that the connection is poor and the call keeps dropping both employer and candidate are going to start to prematurely call the whole thing off”, says Amari Winters, regular contributor to Draftbeyond and Writinity. Make sure to have your laptop or tablet fully charged. Check that your mic is working. But, be ready to switch to either a phone call or some other type of video call software at any minute. Internet connections can’t always be relied on so make sure you have a Plan B for that as well. Keep your candidates phone number on hand for easy call back.
Prepare Ahead Of Time (Both Of You!)
Be sure to have a professional username for your video account! Set a professional stage. What can you see in the background? Have a “do not disturb” sign ready to be put on your door. Conducting an interview (and being interviewed) can be a little stressful. Under pressure, we’re all capable of having a brain freeze. To avoid this, write down the questions you need to ask ahead of time. Don’t just pray for fluency in the moment. Interviewees should also have questions ready. This shows a level of genuine interest and with fluctuating bandwidth it can be a perfect way to fill those empty silences.
Record Yourself For Practice
We look and sound very different when filmed through the narrow lens of a computer webcam. You may not realize how strange it looks when you lean your head to the side and out of shot. It is a good idea to look into the other person’s eyes directly when talking. Consider recording a few practice questions on the same camera you will be using for the interview and see how everything feels ahead of time.
Look The Part for a Video Interview
Dress professionally. Just like real life, impressions matter. so, If you are conducting an interview from your home office, don’t only wear a shirt and go pant-less. You may be more comfortable but you may need to stand up to get a folder and forget how your dressed! Read more on tips on what to wear.
By remembering these tips you’re well on your way to handling your skype interview and mitigating any of the potential awkwardness or mishaps that can affect the employer-potential employee relationship. If in doubt, just practice everything beforehand and you’ll have nothing to worry about.
Written by Inna Yegorova. Inna is a business analyst living in Springfield, MA. She helps clients define business goals, find market opportunities and standardize their workflows. In her free time, she enjoys healthy cooking, playing tennis and writing on all aspect of business development at Lucky Assignments and Gum Essays, academic writing websites.