How to Prepare for a Video Conference or Skype Interview
Updated: Mar 19
In the current climate, it is good practice to follow the ongoing medical advice as it is released. Many companies and firms are moving to the stage where they are asking all staff to work remotely.
But of course, the work must continue! And, if a firm is in the middle of the recruitment process, they most likely will still want to see it through. As such, many of the clients we work with have requested that for the foreseeable future, all interviews take place remotely. What this means is the interviews will be conducted by video conference, Skype, FaceTime or equivalent.
Whilst such an interview is not the same as a face to face meeting, there are a number of things you can do to ensure you appear professionally, build rapport with the interviewers and give yourself the best possible chance of securing an offer.
Prepare exactly as if you were meeting face to face.
Your preparation for the interview should be no different than if you were having a face to face conversation. You still need to review your CV, go through your experience, practice answers to common questions and have reasons why you want to work at that particular firm. Here is a link to an article explaining how to get it right in the interview. Many of the points still apply.
Dress to impress.
You still need to look the part. In fact, because you won't be in the same room, your appearance will add an additional element to the interview. So, dress exactly as you would for a face to face meeting. Wear your best suit or suit jacket, tie or blouse. You'll feel more like being in the office if you have your 'uniform' on.
Test the connection and software first.
Make sure that you have a strong wi-fi connection running. Most people now use wireless, but if you can plug your connection straight into your computer this will provide a stronger signal, which means you won't have audio fading in and out. Also, make sure that you have the up-to-date version of the relevant software installed. And, do a test run by calling a friend or family member and ensuring that they can see and hear you. If the interview is the first time you use it and it doesn't work, you might not get a second chance!
Pick in advance where you are going to interview!
Plan in advance the best place to set up your computer for the interview. If it is a laptop and can be moved, make sure the area in shot is clean and free of clutter. Also, make sure the lighting is good. And, ensure that you have a strong wi-fi/ internet connection. If it cannot be moved, then it is likely already in a study or office. Adapt the lighting as needed. Extra tip: Make sure the computer camera is at eye level - it makes for a more flattering shot.
Managing Other People in the House.
If there are other people in the house at the time of the interview (which there is likely to be in the current climate), where possible, ask them to keep away for the duration of the interview. Similarly, if your children are at home, then where possible, ask your partner to keep an eye on them. Also, make pets comfortable elsewhere in the house, if you have any.
This article was written by Peter Robertson for CarterJay Legal. Peter can be contacted on firstname.lastname@example.org or 07834 436775. CarterJay Legal is a boutique legal recruitment agency based in London. They specialise in private practice roles with a large variety of law firms, catering for associates and partners alike.