2 women looking at laptop and talkingTechnology affects how we stay connected, even during the job search process. Many employers are choosing to interview job candidates using Skype or Google Hangout for remote or "work from home" jobs or to accommodate job seekers during the hiring process. Like any other interview, you'll need to research and prepare. Find out how to make your video interview successful!

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A Video Interview! Now What?

Nov 7, 2019

2 women using a laptop and talkingWe're all getting more comfortable with technology: We FaceTime with friends; we buy dog food online, and we get our news from social media. So, it should come as no surprise that your next job interview may be online. Many employers are choosing to interview job candidates using Skype or Google Hangout for remote or "work from home" jobs or to save the time or transportation costs of scheduling in-person meetings.

There's no getting around the fact that if you have a video interview in your future, you'll still need to do all the research and preparation required for any in-person or telephone interview. However, preparing for a video interview adds a few extra steps. Below are some measures you can take to make sure yours is a successful interview. 

Day before the interview

Chances are you'll be at home using your own equipment so do a trial run before the interview.

If necessary, download the software that you'll be using. That way, you won't have any last-minute installation issues or password problems right before your interview. 

Set up your camera and any headset or microphone as if you were going to do the actual interview. Your camera should be at eye level to mimic the environment of an in-person interview. It's a good idea to practice with a friend because it often takes a few tries to get the hang of angling the camera so that your whole face is in the frame. 

Pay attention to the lighting, too. You do not want to have light sources behind you since that will leave your face in the shadows.

Check to make sure your sound equipment works properly and check that others can hear you loudly and clearly through your microphone.

Take a look at the background that shows up in the video. Does it look cluttered or distracting? Plan to have your background be tidy. A plain wall is ideal, or an office-like setting.

Because technology can sometimes fail, make sure you have the interviewer's email address or phone number, so you can contact them if you completely lose each other.

Day of the interview

Dress as you would for an in-person interview. Wear solid colors—prints and patterns can be distracting on video.

Make sure you are in a quiet space free from distractions, like pets, children or music. Also, turn off your phone and computer alerts and make sure that you only have necessary applications open on your screen.

If you're able to, mimic eye contact by looking at the camera (and not the picture-in-picture image of yourself).

Again, if you're able, use the same good posture you would use during an in-person interview. Avoid making a lot of hand gestures. There can be lag time, and hand gestures can appear repetitive on the screen. If you use American Sign Language (ASL), sign at a steady pace and be clear and concise.

Have a copy of your resume readily available in case you have to refer to dates, job titles, or numbers. Also, have a piece of paper and a pen ready in case you need to make notes.

Some employers record video interviews to compare answers among candidates. Be sure that whatever you say, you'd be comfortable if it were recorded.

Smile, nod and focus as much as possible. Try to behave as if you're in a regular, in-person interview. Look into the camera, listen attentively, and engage with your interviewer. Don't just wait for your turn to speak.

Being able to communicate your value to an employer through one-way video or in a Skype conversation is key. Using these video interviewing tips will help you impress your prospective employer, and allow your strengths to resonate with the hiring manager.

Find Help with Ticket to Work

The Ticket to Work (Ticket) program provides free services and supports to individuals ages 18 through 64 who receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) due to a disability and want to work.

To learn more about the Ticket program, call the Ticket to Work Help Line at 1-866-968-7842 or 1-866-833-2967 (TTY) Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET. Ask a representative to send you a list of service providers or find providers on your own with the Ticket program Find Help tool.

To learn more about the Ticket program, call the Ticket to Work Help Line at 1-866-968-7842 or 1-866-833-2967 (TTY) Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET. Ask a representative to send you a list of service providers or find providers on your own with the Ticket program Find Help tool.

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