Preparing for your video interview can be quite nerve-wracking. From researching how to answer specific interview questions to preparing what you’re going to say or do, it can all come together and give you a hard time.

Video interviews are a popular interviewing method that is held remotely and saves time for both you and the recruiter. They also enable easy communication between parties that live in different geographical locations.

Keep reading for tips on how to excel at your next video interview in 2023!

Key Takeaways

  • The main difference between a pre-recorded and a live video interview is that pre-recorded interviews can be recorded and can be checked when recruiters have more time to pay detailed attention to them. 
  • A video interview, on the other hand, needs to happen when both parties are available at the same date and time.
  • Treat your video interview the same as a live interview. Showing disinterest just because it’s online will cost you your job.
  • Prepare for your video interview by avoiding technical issues or distractions from your family members or roommates.
  • Test your video interview questions with a friend to check whether you need to make any adjustments.

Pre-Recorded vs. Live Video Interview video interview

A pre-recorded video interview is a type of interview where the employer will record some questions, which they will then send to you to answer. For the interview questions, you will need to record yourself answering them.

You and the recruiter don’t have to be available at the same time for the pre-recorded interview to happen. The video-recorded questions can be sent at any time, giving you and the recruiters flexibility in terms of timing.

In contrast, a live video interview is, just as the name suggests, a live interview that happens when both parties are available at the same time. Companies usually use a video interview to allow you space to speak from the comfort of your own home, without worrying about traveling to their offices.

The pre-recorded video interview is best for the primary screening, whereas the live video interview is recommended for the final interview round.

6 Tips on How to Prepare for a Video Interview 

Preparing for your video interview can help you avoid any challenges during it. Let’s take a look at some tips on how you can prepare:

#1. Treat it as a Live Interview 

Although your interview is online, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t treat it like a face-to-face one. The only difference is that you don’t need to travel for your interview. 

Besides that, you need to prepare everything else just like you would for an office interview. This includes everything from doing research on the company to even preparing answers for common interview questions. 

You can also prepare some questions that you want to ask the interviewer in return. 

Additionally, make sure to show that you are passionate, even though it’s tricky to do in a video interview. You will still need to convince the interviewer that you are the perfect fit for the job, even if you’re not face-to-face.

#2. Prepare Answers 

It’s a good idea to prepare some sample answers for your interview so you know what to say if you suddenly forget a detail or two. The job interviewer will not see anything you have around your desk, so you can put up some sticky notes to help you remember your answers.

However, you need to be careful not to look too long at anything besides your camera or screen. 

Since reading notes during your interview is not really recommended, you can also try and use notes during your practice interview. This will help you notice if the answers sound too robotic or if the conversation isn’t going smoothly.

It’s best to read your notes before entering your interview. The more you practice them, the less you will need to look at them during your interview. 

#3. Test Technology 

Before entering your video interview, test all of your technology beforehand. Check whether your camera and microphone are working on the same software that the interview will be held on (e.g., Skype, Zoom, or Meet). 

Besides that, make sure that your internet connection is stable and that you will not face interruptions during your interview. 

You can also ask a friend to help you out by joining the meeting to see whether your face can be seen and your voice can be heard clearly. 

Lastly, do some research to familiarize yourself with the software so you know how to use it when the interview date comes up. 

#4. Prepare the Environment 

Make sure that you are in a quiet room for your interview. Your video interview background should be neutral, with little to no distractions. If by any chance you don’t have a room with a blank wall that you can use, some software allows you to blur your background as well. Make sure the lighting in your room is bright enough that you can be clearly visible.

#5. Outfit Matters 

Although the interviewer will not see your full body in the call, it’s still important to follow proper video interview etiquette. It’s important to show your seriousness by following a video interview dress code, which is the same as following a live interview dress code. If the company is known for its formal dress code, your outfit on the call should also be formal. That includes your lower body as well. 

Dressing well for your video interview will leave a good impression on the recruiter, who will see that even though the interview is being held online, you are ready to show formality with your outfit. 

To prepare for the video interview, try on your outfit during a test call with a friend. Make sure your upper body is fully visible so that a low-cut shirt won’t make it seem like you have nothing on. 

#6. Practice everything beforehand

Last but not least, make sure to practice your interview with a video call with your friend. If this is your first time attending a video interview, you will probably feel a little pressure at first. 

That’s why it’s best to prepare a mock video call with your friend to help you out. They can tell you whether you’re maintaining good eye contact, whether you’re stuttering, and can tell you what needs to be changed. 

Another great idea is to record your mock call. Once you play the recording back, you will notice anything you’ve done during the call that you need to change. You can then make any adjustments as necessary.

5 Tips on What to do During a Video Interview video interview

Here’s a list of five tips you can use during your video interview:

#1. Enter the Call on Time 

Enter the interview on time or, even better, a few minutes earlier. Just as you wouldn’t enter an interview room late, the same thing is also required for video interviews. 

Remember to turn on your computer, laptop, or phone beforehand and close any additional windows that may slow them down. Closing all extra windows and tabs. If necessary, prepare a tab to share your screen for your portfolio or resume. 

Most importantly, take a minute or two to relax beforehand.

#2. Maintain Good Posture 

Since you’re used to staying slouched on your couch and bed at home, it’s normal to feel more relaxed. However, it’s important to avoid that and maintain a good posture during your video interview. 

A good posture shows that you are listening well and paying attention to the recruiter. Make sure to sit well in your chair, keep your feet on the ground, and keep your hands on the table.

#3. Use Facial Expressions

Although your interview is being held online, it’s still important to keep your facial expression in check. Since eye contact is minimal due to the camera and the microphone will not pick up any soft voices, you will need to rely on your body language and facial expressions. 

Nod when the other person is talking so that you don’t interrupt them; use your hands to gesticulate; and don’t act like a robot, so the interviewers don’t think you lost connection. 

#4. Emphasize Your Answer is Complete

Sometimes it’s not obvious that you’ve finished talking, so make sure you signal this to the interviewer. To do this, you can either nod or ask the interviewer a question to allow them to speak next

Additionally, it’s best to avoid a long, awkward silence by just telling them flat-out that you have finished your answer. 

#5. Avoid interruptions 

Do your best to avoid interruptions during your call. Inform your family members or roommates not to enter your room during the interview, and close your door if possible. Check whether there are any construction projects on the building nearby and turn off any other electronic devices that will not be used during the interview. 

If, by any chance, an interruption is inevitable, let the recruiters know at the beginning of your interview. This will also help you relax a little, so you don’t have to worry about distractions. 

How to Deal With Video Interview Challenges

Here’s a list of challenges you might face during video interviews and how you can deal with them: 

  • Someone entered the room. To avoid this issue, it’s best to notify your family members that you’re holding an interview and that you don’t want them to enter your room. Besides that, you can also lock your door to avoid any interruptions.
  • There’s a distraction. Avoid ordering food before your interview. If the delivery comes while you’re at your interview, you will need to excuse yourself, and you will not be able to eat during it. Make sure to grab a bite way before the interview starts so that you are well-fed and energized.
  • There’s a disruption. If someone in your building is currently remodeling their apartment,it’s best to let them know that you’re holding an interview. Ask them whether they can remain quiet until the interview is done. If that’s not possible, consider finding another quiet location for your interview.
  • There’s a connectivity problem. Ask your family members not to use the wi-fi connection until you are done with your interview. You can also have mobile data in hand to help you stay connected in case of an emergency.
  • You’re not familiar with the video call tool. As previously mentioned, prepare for your video interview by familiarizing yourself with the calling software. Learn how to mute and unmute yourself as well as how to turn your camera on and share your screen if necessary.

Final Thoughts 

And that’s all there is to know!

When you’re job hunting, you should definitely treat a video interview the same as you would a face-to-face one. Dress nicely, maintain proper facial expressions, and prepare for any technical issues before entering your video interview, and you’ll be all set! 

One thing to remember is that you need to focus on making a connection with the interviewer,  and to do that, you need to prepare beforehand.

Hopefully, this article has helped you prepare, and we wish you good luck with your video interview!