|By Kelly Benson,
Branch Manager at Eagle
The COVID-19 pandemic has turned the world upside down and it has resulted in some significant changes to our professional lives. Working from home with spouses, kids, pets and other distractions has been a big adjustment, as has limited social contact outside of our “bubbles”.
Many of our clients offer “essential services” ranging from banking to telecommunication to energy and all things in between. For these companies, the show must go on and many projects are continuing on as planned. This has resulted in some very quick changes to standard hiring procedures.
Over the past 2 months at Eagle, virtually all of our clients have switched to video interviewing. While this capability has been in existence for years, most of our clients have preferred traditional in-person interviews. COVID-19 has forced this shift and many of our clients are adjusting to this new normal, as are the candidates that we work with.
While the interview questions are likely to remain the same, there are some differences between an in-person and a virtual interview. Whether you are facing uncertainty in your current role or are trying to make some progress in your job search during this time, we are here to help.
Prepare Your Technology
As great as technology is, Murphy’s Law says your video interview is exactly when it will misbehave.
- Test everything before-hand. How is your Wi-Fi connection? Do you need to download software?
- Avoid surprises from popping up during the interview. Close unnecessary apps, disable notifications, plug in or be sure your battery is fully charged, etc.
- Log in a few minutes early to be sure you have time to address any unexpected problems.
- Always have a back-up plan. Make sure you have the interviewers phone number just in case you have problems connecting.
Your Interview Space
The right space will set the right impression with the interviewer and help you focus properly to put your best foot forward.
- Is it professional?
- Is it quiet and distraction free?
- Does everyone in your home know that you cannot be interrupted?
Be Well Prepared
Preparation is just as crucial for a video interview as it is for an in-person interview.
- Research the company and go beyond the website. What are they sharing on social media? What is important to the organization? Who are you talking to?
- Make sure you understand the role. Give the job description an extra read-through and mark any uncertainties.
- Practice speaking in front of your camera and don’t be afraid to record yourself so you can hear how others hear you.
- Be ready to talk about your experience and what you can contribute. How does this role fit into the bigger picture of your career?
Cheat – Just a Little
One of the benefits of a virtual interview is that the interviewer can’t see what is behind the camera, so take advantage of that! Have some talking points that you want to be sure to work into your conversation posted behind your screen. Keep them simple, don’t go overboard and be sure not to read them.
Dress to Impress
First impressions count and this is an interview. It is important to dress for the job you want and make a good first impression. It is equally important for the top to match the bottom – just in case you need to get up.
Although the word “unprecedented” has been overused over the past 2 months, there really isn’t any better way to describe our current situation. Most companies are now working in a new and completely remote set-up. While many of our clients have worked out the ability to onboard workers in the midst of the pandemic, none of the processes have been perfected. Hiring decisions typically require approval from a number of different people. With everyone working remotely, approvals are taking longer.