ASK HR:What are some top tips for handling video interviews?

By MWIKALI MUTHIANI

Q: I was invited for a video interview a few weeks ago and although I did my best, I was not successful. I really needed the job and I am quite disappointed with myself for not getting it. I have been brooding ever since but I know that I need to pick myself up and prepare for the next opportunity. Do you have any tips on how to handle video interviews?

I am glad you are keen to overcome your disappointment. Interviews are like any other competition. We sign up knowing that there can only be one winner, and hoping it will be us. But even if you don’t get the job, you will gain important feedback that will make you better equipped when the next opportunity comes. Video interviews are not as new as some of us think. But although the technique has been with us for a while, Covid-19 and social distancing requirements have made it more popular. The fundamentals of video interviews are not very different from in-person sessions, but there are a few things that are important to ensure the experience is rewarding for both parties.

Ensure you have a reliable laptop or computer. A bigger screen works better for interviews but if you have a smartphone, it will suffice. Check and confirm the platform to be used for the interview and install the latest version. Closer to D-day, ensure you secure a quiet place and test your sound, which will be better if you have reliable headsets. Video interviews can be a bit intrusive, so be careful not to expose your home too much. Also, aim to get sufficient lighting so that your picture becomes clearer and your expressions easy to observe, bearing in mind that an interview is not just about the discussions, but also about interpersonal skills which the interviewers will be keenly observing.

On the day of the interview, ensure you are well-groomed. Pick colours that will be easy on the screen. Log in a bit earlier to ensure that all your settings are working well. Remember to suspend all pop-up notices to minimise distractions. You don’t want to be at an interview rearing to go only to see a pop-up message from your landlord reminding you of your rent arrears.

Once settled, remember that the interview process is just like any other. The panel will introduce themselves and ask the questions. Your role is to answer and give examples to back your responses. Check and confirm that you are audible, then sit back and enjoy the interview.

Mwikali Muthiani – Managing Partner, MillennialHR; @MwikaliN

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