YouTube, Skype, Go Pro, webcams … there is no doubt that video technology is here to stay! And for many employers, video interviewing is a much more convenient and cost-effective alternative to the traditional in-person interview, especially when travel and overnight expenses come into play.

According to the Career Center, there are many format-specific elements interviewees need to understand and consider when conducting a video interview. Here are some recommendations provided by the National Association of Colleges and Employers to help candidates prepare for video interviews:

  1. Know the technology and be comfortable with it. Being adept with the technology gives one credibility as a professional. Therefore, candidates should not sign up for a video interview until they’re comfortable with the process. They should be able to identify what they can and cannot do with the audio and video controls, what their image looks like, and where to look once the interview begins.
  2. Consider image and the interview environment. Candidates should always dress professionally, even for a video interview, as it is an actual interview. They should consider if the background of the interview area is consistent with the image they want to portray to recruiters. Remove or silence all distractions, such as cellphone ringers, email alerts, music, and background noise.
  3. Test all settings and connections beforehand. Make sure the settings are optimized and all connections are working prior to the interview to avoid any issues during the interview.
  4. Be prepared for a system hiccup. Have a plan B ready in case the technology fails during the video interview. For example, have a cellphone ready to use in case the connection is unacceptable or drops. Being prepared in such a manner and making a smooth transition to another method in light of unexpected problems can impress an employer and shows one’s ability to problem-solve and quickly adapt.

In addition, the Career Center also encourages students and alumni to practice any interviews in advance, whether an interview is in-person or by video. “Employers are evaluating more than just the candidate’s answers,” said Andee Radliff, the Career Center’s employer relations assistant director. “They are also considering one’s passion and confidence in what is shared. Body language, tone of voice, eye contact, and word choice are just a few factors that brands a candidate’s credibility for a position, the industry, or fit for the organization.”

To help students and alums practice their interview skills, the Career Center offers InterviewStream, an online videotaping tool that allows them to pull up interview questions and records them answering the questions. This allows an individual to be able review the video afterward, identify areas to improve, and practice again until one feels confident and comfortable with the results.

The Career Center also provides private interview rooms with webcams and large screens for Redbirds to reserve to use InterviewStream or for a video interview. For more information on interview room reservations, InterviewStream, or video interviewing, contact the Career Center.

Source: “Tips to Preparing for Video Interviewing,” National Association of Colleges and Employers, January 30, 2015