Top Tips for Telephone and Video Interviews

More and more companies nowadays are looking to reduce their costs when it comes to recruiting new staff.

With better technology, carrying out phone and video interviews is common place and is something prospective candidates need to get a handle on and become comfortable with.

If you’ve never had a phone or Skype interview, it can seem a little daunting the first time. Here are our top tips for giving yourself a better chance:

1. Dress to Impress

Just because you’re not heading into a formal interview setting in front of a panel, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t put on your best suit for the occasion. This might seem obvious for a video interview but it’s also important if you are simply being contacted on the phone. It will make you feel more empowered and keep you focused psychologically. Dress like a business person and you’re more likely to act like one.

2. Practice Makes Perfect

Despite what you may think, having a phone or video interview is different from a face to face interaction. We often have different mannerisms and habits when talking on the phone and that can make us appear stilted, less communicative or focused. It’s important to have some practice and do mock interviews so that you don’t waste your time and find yourself struggling for things to say on the day. Record the practice and review it to see how you can improve your performance.

3. Have a Contingency Plan in Place

While tech has improved dramatically over the last decade or so, there’s always the chance that it can go wrong. Your connection might be a little dicey and cut out at the wrong time so you need to have a back up plan in place, especially if you’re having the interview on your mobile. Don’t be tempted to have the interview in a busy location or out on the street or even travelling either. Choose a quiet place where you are not likely to be disturbed and which has a good, strong connection.

4. Set Up and Be Ready

Especially if you are having a video interview, it’s a good idea to set up your camera and be ready for action. Particularly check your background to make sure there’s nothing hanging around that could be cause for concern.

5. Be Natural

One problem that many people have with phone and video interviews is that it feels a little unnatural. The key to this is making sure you do all the things you would normally do for an interview and that includes preparing well.

You’ll want to show that you have all the skills and attributes that the company is looking for as well as being a close cultural fit to the business. If you have a lot to cover, write down a few bullet points that you want to get across – the great thing about video and phone interviews is that the panel aren’t able to see these. They can certainly help keep you on track.

If you are interviewing nowadays, the chances are high that your first contact is going to be online or over the phone. There’s also the potential that you could be contacted on the spur of the moment rather than at a designated time. It’s a good idea to start practising phone and video interviews now and not wait for it to happen for real. That way, you’ll always be prepared.