By Lynn Kavcsak, Dean of Career & Employment Resources

During the COVID-19 pandemic, employers have continued to screen job candidates by phone; but second-round, in-person interviews are less common. You’re likely to find yourself participating in a virtual interview with a potential employer, using a platform such as Zoom, WebEx, or Microsoft Teams. Below are tips for a polished virtual interview:

Before your interview:

  • Research the company by visiting its website and reviewing its mission statement.
  • Prepare two or three questions to ask at the end of the interview.
  • Dress appropriately, as you would for an in-person interview – not too casual or too formal.
  • Set up a simple, professional-looking backdrop for your interview.
  • Minimize files and other distractions on your computer.
  • Position yourself 12-18 inches from your screen.
  • Test positions so that your face is not too high or too low for the camera.
  • Test platform audio in advance.
  • PRACTICE using different virtual platforms.
  • Log in 5-10 minutes early.

During your interview:

  • Smile!
  • Make good eye contact by looking into the camera.
  • Listen attentively and respond appropriately to all questions.
  • Show enthusiasm and professionalism.
  • Keep noise to a minimum, including pets and children.

After your interview:

  • Follow up the interview with a personal email, thanking your interviewer and reiterating why you would be a good fit for the position and the company.
  • Be patient. Companies are hiring, but the hiring process is taking longer during the pandemic.

Good luck!

Source: Dress for Success sponsored Industry-Specific Hiring Practices during Covid-19 Coaching Panel, Monday, September 14, 2020.