19 Jan 2021

The Art of the Virtual Interview

In our blog last week on Ghosting, we briefly discussed the move from face-to-face interviews to virtual interviews. This week we wanted to dive deeper into ‘The Art of the Virtual Interview’, naturally we are all used to the initial face-to-face first impression. Covid has undoubtedly altered the hiring process, in this difficult market it is essential that interviewees are able to navigate a successful transition for the preparation and delivery of the virtual interview.

As such, we have put out heads together and developed our top tips on the Virtual Interview…

  1. You never get a second chance to make a first impression…

In a virtual interview, you’ve got control of what the interviewer sees – so use it to your advantage.

Your visual background is particularly helpful in giving some clues about your personality, so make sure your background is reflective of this, what do you want to portray? With this in mind remember to keep it professional and simple!

Lighting is another important element of the virtual interview; we need to allow people to really see our facial expressions and warmth. The light needs to come from the side not from above!

Research – similar to a face-to-face interview, make sure you have thoroughly researched the people you are meeting with, the company and the role.

Timings – the joy of a virtual interview is; you don’t have to worry about travel delays and getting lost! This does not mean that you can roll out of bed 5 minutes before the interview, make sure you have plenty of time to organise yourself and check your technology.

  1. Dress to impress…

Consider how you are framing yourself. Ordinarily, we would see somebody’s whole body but with the virtual interview, typically, we just see the top half of the person we are meeting with. You want to allow people to see the whole of the top part of your body, not just the neck and the head. This is crucial, not only to avoid looking like a floating head, but also because we use our body language a lot in everyday life. Hands are a really important communication tool, even virtually, because it allows us to signal things like being decisive and assertive through hand gestures.

When dressing for your interview, ensure you are dressing appropriately for the company – look at their company profile pictures, are they suited and booted or smart casual? When dressing for a virtual interview consider the below…

  1. Necklines: soft v necks to elongate.
  2. Colour: stay safe in an array of blues/ teals/ aquas. Or embrace simple patterns.
  3. Fabric: be cautious of sweat patches. Wear a fabric that glides rather than clings.
  1. The interview…

Environment! Make sure you are somewhere quiet and give yourself time before the interview to go over your notes.

Answering questions: STAR (Situation Task Action Result) using this technique at its best is invisible to the listener and comes across as a well-articulated answer.

Engage with your interviewer: answering any questions clearly and precisely, whilst describing in a positive, engaging way. Make sure not to talk over the interviewer and don’t be afraid to pause, online ‘dead air’ can be intimidating but don’t rush to fill the silence – use it to your advantage, i.e., take a sip of water whilst preparing your answer.

Building rapport: creating professional rapport is going to be harder on line but there are a few ways you can help this along:

  1. Research! If you are well-prepped dialogue will flow more naturally.
  2. Neuro-linguistic programming (NLP): engage with your interviewers’ body language and eye contact.

Ultimately don’t forget that while trying to build rapport in an interview you’re actually there to prove you can do the job too. If you have any further questions regarding the virtual interview technique or your job search, please do not hesitate to contact us at admin@18-07.com


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