Mastering the Virtual Interview: A Guide for Candidates and Employers

In today’s digitally-driven age, virtual interviews have become the new norm. Both companies and job seekers have pivoted to this format, largely out of necessity due to global circumstances. At Hunter, we’ve seen first-hand the challenges and opportunities this platform presents. Let’s dive into some strategies for both candidates and employers to truly optimise the online interview experience.

For the Candidates:

  1. Technical Readiness: Before the scheduled interview, test all technical components. This includes your camera, microphone, and internet connection. Use platforms such as Zoom, Microsoft Teams, or Skype, depending on what the employer prefers. Familiarise yourself with the software’s functionalities.
  2. Minimise Distractions: Find a quiet, well-lit room for the interview. Eliminate background noises and distractions, informing family or housemates about your interview to ensure they don’t interrupt.
  3. The Dress Code: It is crucial to understand the company interviewing you. A pivotal aspect of the research during the interview process is grasping the company’s culture, including its dress code. Your recruiter can be an invaluable resource for such insights; their goal is to ensure you’re at ease and equipped with all pertinent information to ace the interview.
  4. Maintain Eye Contact: Instead of looking at your own video feed, focus on the camera when speaking. This gives the impression of direct eye contact, establishing rapport and engagement.
  5. Prepare and Research: Just because you’re in a familiar setting doesn’t mean you can wing it. Prepare as rigorously as you would for an in-person interview, researching the company, practising answers, and having questions ready.

For the Employers:

  1. Offer Clear Instructions: Ensure your candidates are aware of the software they’ll need, any accounts they must set up, or documents they should have on hand. This minimises last-minute difficulties.
  2. Empathy is Key: Understand that virtual interviews may be new for some candidates, and they could be nervous. Offer a bit of reassurance or begin with light conversation to ease into the session.
  3. Pay Attention to Body Language: While it’s more challenging in a virtual setting, observing body language can still offer insights into a candidate’s confidence, enthusiasm, and truthfulness.
  4. Maintain Professionalism: This isn’t just a tip for candidates. Employers, too, should conduct interviews in a quiet, professional setting. Dress appropriately and eliminate potential interruptions.
  5. Streamline the Follow-Up Process: After a virtual interview, it’s essential to keep the momentum going. Ensure that candidates are aware of the next steps, whether that’s another round of interviews, an assignment, or a timeline for decisions. A well-defined follow-up process not only shows organisational skills but also respects the candidate’s time and effort, making them feel valued and informed.

The realm of virtual interviews, while practical, carries its own set of challenges. Yet, with a blend of preparation, understanding, and technical readiness, both candidates and employers can ensure the process is smooth, productive, and even enjoyable.

At Hunter, our commitment is to bridge the gap between talent and opportunity. With the rise of virtual processes, we’re here to guide both businesses and job seekers through every step, ensuring that even in a digital landscape, personal connection remains at the forefront of recruitment. So, whether you’re an employer or employee in today’s virtual world, get in touch with us today and experience the Hunter difference.