Let’s set the scene.
You’ve recently graduated and have spent the last few months applying for jobs non-stop, following all the rules on how to construct the ideal CV and cover letter.
You spend days refreshing your email inbox waiting for that one employer to take a chance on you. You’ve got the experience now, after all, so finding a graduate job should be fairly easy, right?
Hours turn into days, weeks and then months until – finally – the fateful day comes: you have one unread email in your mailbox.
You open it to find an invite to a virtual job interview – a chance to prove yourself and put your hard university work to good use.
However, since you’ve not had a virtual interview before, you’re unsure how to properly prepare for it. You turn to Google for answers and it’s that which brings you here.
Well, we have good news – we can help.
From Graduate To Go-Getter
Following on from the events of the coronavirus pandemic, with the furlough scheme in full flow and redundancies aplenty, finding a new job can be a lot easier said than done.
But if you’ve managed to do exactly that, firstly, congratulations!
And secondly, here is a detailed list of what you should and shouldn’t do when it comes to the virtual interview itself:
Do: Get A Good Night’s Sleep
Never underestimate the importance of a good night’s sleep. Not only can getting a full eight hours to make you look and feel a lot better, but it could also help with your performance as well, enabling you to interview to your full potential.
As such, to ensure you sleep as well as you can, try to block out as much light coming into your bedroom as possible and head to bed at a sensible time in the days leading up to your interview.
Similarly, avoid using your phone or laptop before bed and, to go the extra mile, consider upgrading your mattress – you won’t believe how much difference it can make to your life from both a mental and physical perspective.
Don’t: Rush Your Answers
While you may be feeling nervous during your interview, try not to let your nerves get the better of you. Otherwise, you could find yourself rushing your answers, blanking completely or delivering poor body language – none of which would impress your interviewer.
Therefore, before your interview, get your practice answers together and make sure your responses are as clear and succinct as possible.
Try to also eliminate ‘ums’ and ‘uhs’ from your sentences and pay close attention to the grammar you use – slang words won’t help you land the job you want.
Do: Get Your Technology In Order
First impressions count for a lot so why not prove to your interviewer that you’ve really gone the extra mile, by ensuring your technology is all in order beforehand?
They’ll need to hear you clearly, after all, so make sure your microphone – whether it be a standalone computer mic or an in-built headphone mic – is working effectively.
Similarly, your camera should be crystal clear, showing you and your surroundings in the best possible light. While your laptop’s webcam may be OK, investing in a newer, better quality one could be a much more worthwhile investment. That way, even if you don’t land the role this time, you’ll have it available for any future virtual interviews you have.
Don’t: Be Underprepared
There’s no such thing as being underprepared – in fact, the more you can do beforehand, the better.
Therefore, do your research about the company and job you’re interviewing for before you get started. Likewise, make sure you’re equipped with great, non-clichéd answers to the interviewer’s potential questions – from why you want the job in the first place to the level of experience you can offer.
You should also make sure your interview clothes are washed, ironed and fully prepared enough in advance. On the day of the interview itself, the less you can give yourself to do before it starts, the more time you’ll have to prepare.
So, there you have it – some of the key things you should and shouldn’t do when getting ready for a virtual job interview.
In essence, it boils down to the old Benjamin Franklin phrase: “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.”
Make sure you don’t fall into this pattern. Get your technology, clothes, surroundings, answers and health in order beforehand, and you’ll do just fine. Best of luck!