Your revamped CV and cover letter caught someone’s eye? Great! You’ve got an interview! The catch is that you’re not being invited to an office, you’re going to be doing it via Zoom or another video conferencing platform. Video interviews are now an important part of today’s recruitment process and the Covid-19 pandemic has increased their popularity.

But this is a first for you and for most people you know and you’re panicking. How is it different from in-person interviews that people have been going to for years? It’s important to prepare for these types of interviews as there are some important differences between digital and conventional interviews.

Here is a checklist of digital tips to prepare for your interview:

• Download the software used for the interview (e.g. Zoom, Skype, Teams). The digital platform may be chosen by the interviewer or you might be asked which one will suit you best. Whichever one is decided on, e.g. Zoom, can be downloaded onto your device in the way you would download any normal app. A cell phone can easily be used for an app such as Zoom.

• Make sure that you are comfortable with how to use the camera and the microphone. Usually, it is similar to a WhatsApp call although the layout of the screen may be different. Use earphones if possible to improve audibility.

• Ensure that you have the right number to dial or the right video link to click prior to the interview

• Check that you have sufficient data for the call. A 1-hour long video interview can use as much as 5GB of data so purchase as much data as you think you might need.

• Ensure your network connection is good

• Your computer or phone should be fully charged

• If you are doing a video interview:
-> Check that you have a clear background with good lighting (check that whatever is behind you is tidy and uncluttered);
-> Dress in a way that is suitable for the sector you’re being interviewed for. (There are many funny videos on YouTube that show people on business video calls who have been inappropriately dressed on the lower part of their body which was revealed when they stood up to fetch something!)

You can ask a trusted friend to call you to practice answering questions over the phone or video call before the interview. You can also prepare for panel interviews by asking a couple of your closest friends to pretend to interview you at the same time.

It is encouraged to ask questions during an interview, but it is not essential. It shows your enthusiasm and desire to join the company. You might ask questions at the end of the interview, such as, ‘What has the employer implemented towards keeping their employees safe during the Covid-19 pandemic?’ Or, ‘What is the next step in the process?’

Remember to keep a positive attitude before you start. Smile and hope for the best. Confidence in yourself and your abilities plays an important role in the way you come across. You’ve got this!

If you don’t ace that job interview what do you do?
So, you did not get the job and feeling demotivated? This is understandable. Rejection is devastating. Understand that you are not alone, and many people get turned down for opportunities. The key to success is to avoid getting depressed by staying positive. Are you new at job seeking or an experienced job hunter? Use the following tips to help you survive job interview rejection and bounce back!

Here’s what to do:

Don’t personalise the rejection: This interview rejection is not about you personally. Don’t use a job interview as a measure of your professional worth. In most cases, you were a stranger to those interviewers, so they had no personal reason to deny you the job.

Always leave room for a Plan B: Don’t pin your hopes on one specific job in the belief that it’s a perfect fit. If you don’t get that job, depression will follow. It’s also smart to pursue multiple opportunities even when you don’t want to.

If possible, get feedback: It can be useful to ask your interviewers for honest feedback about your interview after hearing that you were unsuccessful (you will need to do it soon while it’s fresh in their minds). However, be aware that they don’t have to give you feedback – they would be doing you a favour. If you do get feedback, then make sure you do consider and learn from it.

Understand that you aren’t alone: Many more people interviewed, only one person gets the job. So more people are turned down for jobs than land them – that’s a simple fact. So accept that fact, and focus on the next opportunity.

Talk to someone: Following your interview, talk to a friend or family member so you can share your feelings and then get over it, even if your instinct is to keep it quiet. In the long run, talking about it will help to prepare you for your next interview.

Learn from the experience: It’s painful to be rejected. But hard as they are, these bad experiences can be lessons for us. Therefore, treat your interview rejection as a learning curve.

Take some time to reflect on the job and your performance and address the issues. Consider how to improve on your performance for next time. For example, if you were too nervous, then do more practice next time, so that you know what to say.

Also, remember that the employers are focusing on their needs, and whether you are a good fit. It might be that you were over or under-qualified, for example. As a result, you may need to take some time to search and apply for jobs that you are better qualified for. Or spend a few weeks gaining some extra skills (there are many online courses!) so you are better qualified for the position you want.

All of this will help you bounce back and become a stronger candidate in your next job interview for a role that fits you perfectly.

Are you ready for your next opportunity? Search for jobs today.

Here are some other useful links to get interview tips and questions:

Preparing for a job interview
Interview tips
How to answer common but tricky job interview questions

(Information from this article also came from the site here.)

Thanks to the Harambee Team for content support.


Tell us: have you had an online interview? If so, how did it go?