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Abstract: A Zoom interview is a video job interview that is run through a popular video conferencing product called Zoom. Zoom interviews are becoming more and more popular, as remote recruiting allows companies to reach potential employees from all over the country. And even though it is a great way to connect with applicants regardless of where they're located, online interviews differ significantly from a regular face-to-face hiring process.
You got it!
Your resume has been noticed.
Now it’s time to deal with the whole pre-interview stress extravaganza.
The worst part?
It’s a Zoom interview…
So the perspective of having to look at your own face while talking, plus dealing with possible technical issues, doesn’t help.
But hey, listen:
It doesn’t have to be that scary if you know what mistakes to avoid and what you can do to prepare yourself before the meeting.
So we’ll tell you EVERYTHING!
In this article you’ll find:
- What is a Zoom interview and how to succeed in it.
- Zoom interview tips to apply before, during, and after your video interview.
- What to wear, what background to choose, and other useful tips.
If only you could have a practice run of your next job interview...
With us, you can. Find out exactly how to answer the toughest interview questions. Practice your responses until you're sure they're perfect. Find your confidence, ace your interview, and land your dream job!Get ready for your interview
Need more interview advice? These guides can help:
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- STAR Method for Interview Questions
- How to Answer "Where Do You See Yourself in Five Years"
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With the COVID health crisis, we can see how Zoom has come a long way in the corporate world.
And even though remote hiring has become the mainstream solution for most companies, saying that we're used to video conferencing would be an understatement.
So, whether videoconferencing holds no secrets for you, or you’re just about to go through an online job interview for the first time, here are some tips to make a good impression during your next online Zoom meeting.
Let’s go one step at a time:
1. Prepare Like You Would for a Face-to-Face Interview
Just because you’re going to be interviewed in the comfort of your own home, doesn’t mean that you can take this interview for granted.
Take it seriously.
Like before every job interview, research the company and read about the position. If you know you’re having an interview with one of the current employees of the company you are applying to, try to find their profile on LinkedIn to find out a bit more about them.
The recruiter will definitely want to know a little more about you, so have your resume ready in front of you, so you don’t start babbling and do prepare for the inevitable “Tell me about yourself” interview question.
Expect to be asked what you know about the company and why you want to work there.
2. Test Your Hardware and Software Before the Call
How many times have you experienced these classics:
“Sorry, my camera isn’t working, can we reconnect?”
“Could you hold on a minute, I need to find the headphones.”
“I can't hear anything, is your mic on?”
You don’t want to start your job interview like this, so check all the devices and applications beforehand.
Make sure your camera, headphones, and microphone are working.
By using headphones rather than speakers, you can prevent your interviewer(s) from hearing an echo of their own voices.
Also, close unnecessary programs that may be slowing down your internet connection or making weird sounds.
There’s nothing more distracting than your Facebook Messenger bleeping every ten seconds.
You can avoid most technical difficulties by making sure that you are comfortable with the software beforehand. So make sure you download Zoom and learn how to use it before D-Day.
You will feel more comfortable during the conversation and more resilient if other technical issues arise.
Expert Hint: Interrupting notification sounds is one of the most common online interview mistakes. Different app sounds can cause disturbances during your Zoom interview, which can put you and the recruiter off.
3. Choose a Professional Background
First, make sure you choose a quiet room to sit in for your job interview.
Ideally, no one should disturb you during the meeting, whether by making noises in the next room or walking behind you. So let all of your household members know that you will be in a videoconference.
In addition, feel free to change your decor slightly to make it look good on camera. You can also bring a lamp to get good lighting.
You’ll also want a tidy, uncluttered background that says a little about your personality (paintings, plants, books, etc.). These elements can inspire the small talk at the beginning, which can be a great way to break the ice.
If for any reason you don’t want your interiors to be seen, use a virtual background. If you decide to do so, make sure that you pick a professional image, where your face is the focal point.
4. Prepare a Proper Attire for Your Zoom Interview
We know you are tempted to wear a clean shirt and your everyday dirty sweatpants.
After all, no one will see them, right?
But hey, you know what they say:
Fine feathers make fine birds.
And to a large extent… it’s true.
Also in the case of remote job interviews.
So, for your Zoom interview attire—
Wear an ironed shirt or an elegant blouse. Like with an in-person job interview, match your attire to the position and company you are applying for.
If you’d choose to wear a suit for a normal job interview, then wear it during the Zoom interview, as well.
Regardless of whether it’s an online or live interview, the candidate's appearance is a very important element of the recruitment process. Plus, a professional outfit will make you feel more professional, helping you to get into the role of The Best Candidate for the Job.
5. Mind Your Body Language
Your body language and facial expressions can say a lot about you.
Be interested in what the other person is saying to you by sitting up straight and looking at your screen at all times.
When it’s your time to speak, make sure you always finish your sentences and avoid longer pauses at all costs. Remote communication has come a long way, but it’s still more difficult to pick up on social cues over a Zoom call than it is in person.
Be convincing and try to make connections between your qualities and your skills, as well as the job for which you applied.
6. Be Polite
A smile can go a long way if you're trying to make a good first impression.
And let’s be real here: a video call doesn’t make it easier to establish a relationship with the recruiter.
You can't impress the interviewer with a strong, confident handshake, smell, or nice shoes...
So be aware that they will be listening very carefully and watching you closely, so they can judge if you fit into the culture of the team and company.
What’s your job?
Smile and be friendly.
Pretty simple, right?
7. If You Have Technical Problems, Don't Panic
If you encounter any technical difficulties during your Zoom interview, don't worry and don't panic!
Your interviewer is definitely used to minor technical problems during online interviews.
Didn’t hear the question?
There’s nothing wrong with politely asking for it to be repeated.
If the problem persists, tell them about it. The issue doesn't have to be on your side.
If an interview has to be postponed due to technical issues, don't be upset.
It’s just the perversity of inanimate objects...
Expert Hint: Before the interview, make sure to write down the recruiter's phone number. If you have any connection issues, simply call the interviewer and inform them of the issue. Then try to re-establish the connection while having the recruiter on the phone.
8. Ask Questions
Just because they're interviewing you, doesn't mean you can't ask questions.
Asking your interviewer a few questions can make you look even better in the eyes of your employer.
Plus, it’s a great opportunity to show you paid attention during the conversation and took the time to prepare before the interview.
This way you can also prove your communication skills, the ability to listenand respond appropriately.
9. Take Notes
One of the greatest advantages of a Zoom interview over a live interview is that you can always have your notes in front of you! Of course, keep them low, so that they aren’t visible in the webcam frame.
Thanks to this, you can have a list of questions to ask the interviewer in front of you or your resume for reference.
In addition, you can write down key information that the recruiter gives you that you won’t want to forget later.
Plus, taking notes demonstrates:
- The candidate's interest in the position / company
- The candidate's interest in what the recruiter says
Since keyboard noise can be annoying, keep a pad and pen next to you to jot down any information to remember.
10. Send a “Thank You” Email After a Zoom Interview (and a Follow-Up Email)
The interview is over.
You did your best and there is nothing left to do but wait and hope you get the job...
Just because you've finished the conversation and disconnected, doesn't mean there is nothing more you can do.
On the contrary: a follow-up after the interview can do wonders and even increase your chances.
Provided you do it right…
- Thank-You Email: After the meeting, thank the person (or people) who interviewed you, by sending an email, the same day or the day after your interview.
- Follow-Up: At the end of the interview, the employer probably told you the day they would come back to you. Wait until this date to follow up. In case they don’t contact you, reach out the day after the indicated date.
Getting ready for a Zoom interview? Make sure to follow these tips:
- Get ready like you would for an in-person interview by preparing a proper attire, and researching the company thoroughly.
- Make sure you have a professional background and that your devices are working properly.
- Be polite, ask questions and make notes during the meeting.
- Don’t forget to send a thank-you email and follow-up email.
Thanks for reading! Still not sure what to wear for a Zoom interview? Got questions about something to do with Zoom interviews that we haven’t covered? Perhaps you have some Zoom interview tips of your own? Drop us a line in the comments section, let’s get a conversation rolling!