For job seekers who are hoping to work remotely or relocate, Skype has become a reality of the interview process. Like phone interviews, Skype interviews can be tricky and daunting, but here are some tips for how to make the most of its challenges and how to allow your personality to shine through.
- Look the Part
Just like an in-person interview, you also have to dress appropriately for the job you want on Skype. Unlike in a phone interview, the recruiter will be able to see whether or not you appear professional and are paying attention. Sit up straight and look directly into the camera. Making eye contact during a Skype interview is just as important as if you were interviewing in person. If your hair is long, make sure it’s not obstructing your face, and try to angle your camera in such a way that if you wear glasses, there’s not glare in your frames. Lastly, play with angles and lighting so that interviewers will see you in your best light!
- Neutralize Your Setting
It is extremely important that you conduct your Skype interview in a neutral, quiet setting with strong, reliable WiFi. You don’t want to be interrupted by easily fixable technological malfunctions. Not only is it a pain for your interviewer, but it can distract him or her from the important points you are trying to communicate. A quick test run before the interview starts can help you to avoid any technical issues. However, you can’t always guarantee that nothing will go wrong. If something does happen, it is important to address the situation right away. It will more impressive to your interviewer if you take care of the problem immediately than hoping the problem will fix itself because it shows you care about what they have to say and are willing to take initiative.
If you are conducting your interview from home, choose a neutral background. You don’t want your potential employer noticing your dirty dishes or unmade bed instead of your strengths as a candidate. And if at all possible, find a time to conduct your interview when your roommates or family members are absent. If this doesn’t work, then ask them to be quiet for the duration of the interview and avoid the area where you are set up.
If you don’t have WiFi at home, try to find a place, like a coffee shop or library, that will be quiet enough for you and your interviewer to hear one another. Let your interviewer know up front if you’re in such a setting, so they are prepared for the possibility of distracting noise.
- Practice Makes Perfect
Ask a friend or family member to do a Skype interview test-run. You will be able to get a sense of how you will appear and sound. You might find that you need to adjust your seating so you are closer to your computer’s microphone, or you may learn that you need to use a headset and microphone. A test-run will not only allow you to take care of any technical glitches that might arise in advance, but it is also a great opportunity to practice answering generic interview questions or make sure your camera is adjusted at a flattering angle.
- Update Your Username
If you are creating a Skype account for the first time, make sure to choose a professional username (preferably your first and last name or a combination of the two), and use a corresponding professional email address. If you have previously used your Skype account in more casual settings, you may have a goofy username that might not be appropriate for a work environment. This is easily changeable in your settings and could make a huge difference in your interviewer’s initial perception of you.
If you’re looking for more tips on the interview process, check out our regularly updated blog. Staffers can help you find the job that’s right for you. We specialize in office clerical positions and serve the Jackson Metro Area. Contact Staffers today if you are interested in applying with us. We look forward to hearing from you!