The global pandemic has significantly impacted how we do things, including how we conduct job interviews. And as the world adapts to these changes, companies have also begun tailoring their interview processes to be more thorough and efficient, increasing the number of candidates who can work remotely.
You’ve probably heard a lot about remote work but are still unsure if it’s what you’re looking for. The truth is that many people ask themselves the same question, get excited, and apply for roles they won’t be an excellent fit for.
What is a Zoom Interview Call?
Before anything else: What is a Zoom interview? This videoconferencing alternative gives companies an option that changes the traditional job interview process—albeit not having its own share of drawbacks. A Zoom interview is highly efficient because all interviews are conducted online using Zoom’s state-of-the-art technology platform, enabling people to sit face to face, chat, and collaborate seamlessly worldwide.
On the topic of how to prepare for a Zoom interview, they are a great way to ensure that the recruiter understands the candidate’s accomplishments. Nonetheless, not every candidate is prepared. We’ll look at some basics, such as good internet connection, microphone, and webcam, to ensure your home office is ready for the interview. Moreover, we’ll take a closer look at how you can prepare with questions and how to best answer those questions in a creative manner.
Difference Between In-Person and Zoom Interviews
The traditional interview is a formal meeting with one or more interviewers who ask questions to a candidate in person. By contrast, the virtual experience offers job applicants a chance to present their resumes through videos or digital presentations before the interview.
Related Article: 13 Tips to Help You Prepare for—and Ace—Your Job Interview
Zoom Interview Preparation Tips
First and foremost, research. Researching the company and the job you’re interviewing for should be a no-brainer. It helps you know what to expect and feel ready for your interview. On the recruiter’s side, it allows them to see how prepared you are and make better decisions about your potential fit to their team as they consider all candidates.
When researching a company and position, remember to consider the company’s mission and goals and how they relate to your interests. This research can help you feel more confident about whether a given role is proper for you. Recruiters can tell when an applicant looks unprepared for the interview, so take some time upfront to reflect on your experience and gather examples of projects that made you proud, feedback that helped you grow, or challenging projects that taught you lessons.
Without further ado, here are 10 tips on how to prepare for a Zoom interview.
1. Familiarize yourself with the interview platform.
Try meeting with a friend on Zoom before your interview to get familiar with the platform and test your internet connection. This will allow you to troubleshoot any issues beforehand and enjoy a more seamless interview experience.
When interviewing for a job remotely, you can use video interview tips to help prepare for the unique challenges of the remote hiring process. Using these tips will give you an advantage over other candidates and help ensure you’ll make a better impression than your competition.
2. Use the fastest internet connection you can find and have a backup plan.
Speaking of internet connection, if your connection is shaky during the interview, don’t panic! It happens to everyone sometimes. If it does to you, try turning off your camera. This usually helps improve sound quality.
Having that said; you should also test your equipment before you start the interview. Ensure your microphone and webcam are working and everything looks good on camera to avoid any last-minute issues that could stress you out or delay the discussion.
3. Find a quiet space where you can focus.
Career experts always recommend that candidates find a quiet space in which to hold their interview. However, no one will be offended if a pet or child suddenly appears in the background. We all understand the struggles of balancing work and family. Nonetheless, if possible, remove visual distractions from the room you are in. Paintings or pictures on the wall are fine, but more than two or three colorful posters are distracting.
To ensure that the interviewer can focus on your answers and what you’re saying, ensure that the room you are in is silent. Close your windows to eliminate unnecessary noise like lawnmowers, cars, or anything else.
4. Be in the meeting room on time.
If you are interviewing through Zoom, many employers will use one meeting room or link to talk to multiple job seekers. So you may be entering a “room” used to speak to another job seeker before you. I recommend arriving 2-3 minutes before the scheduled time, but no sooner.
5. Consider a virtual background.
Although it may not affect the day-to-day of your work, your interview background can sway an interviewer’s opinion. First and foremost, your experience should be professional and uncluttered, without distracting items that may take the hiring manager’s attention away from what you’re saying.
A room divider could create a professional backdrop for interviews if your office is in the living room or a bedroom with a less-than-professional background. Take note, a virtual background could help you create a clean-looking video with less effort. For example, a virtual background can hide a cluttered room or keep people from walking in front of the camera.
6. Dress for the occasion.
When you are invited to a job interview, it is essential to dress in a professional manner that reflects the company’s culture. Although a Zoom interview means the interviewer won’t see you in person, it doesn’t mean you should dress up only in your best top half. Dressing in full attire will help you mentally prepare for the interview experience and get you in the right headspace.
It is essential to dress appropriately for the company’s standard office attire. If you are interviewing at an organization where employees must wear suits every day, it is best to dress professionally. To do this, check the company’s website for more information about the dress code or talk to your recruiter.
7. Research the people interviewing you.
How to prepare for a Zoom interview? Again, research. Before interviewing with a company, however, take some time to learn more about their business and the role you’re interviewing for. When meeting with your interviewer, be prepared to ask them how long they’ve been with the company, their part, and what they like most about their job.
Related Article: Phone Interview Questions: A Practical Guide on How to Answer Them
8. Speak clearly, at an average speaking pace.
Obviously, a Zoom interview is a less interactive experience than an in-person one. The challenge during the interview itself will be to keep the conversation lively. Another thing, video interviews can be delayed or when the microphone does not pick up your voice well. To prevent this, take your time when speaking and enunciate your words.
Before your Zoom interview, practice speaking slowly and clearly. Although you may have a great internet connection, the call might cut out for a fraction of a second here and there. Also, if you’re talking slowly and not rushing your responses, it will make you seem more relaxed and confident–two qualities that hiring managers love.
9. Be conscious of your body language.
A lack of confidence can be spotted a mile away. To appear confident, be sure of your answers, sit straight, and look directly into the camera.
Be aware of your body language and the words you choose when communicating with someone. Avoid distracting movements like tapping your hands or feet, clenching your jaw, or doing anything else that makes you appear nervous or tense. What you say in the interview is half the battle; but how you look as you say those words is often just as important. So don’t neglect this preparation step.
Remember that you are still on the camera and can be seen. Make sure your facial expressions show that you’re alert, engaged, and professional.
10. Make sure the date and time are correct.
When arranging a job interview, make sure that you double-check the date and time of your meeting. You do not want to miss your interview because of a mix-up with the schedule. So check the email from the employer and be sure that you have put the meeting on your calendar at the right time, on the right day.
What to Do After the Zoom Interview
As your Zoom interview ends, remember to ask questions about the company and the position. Next, thank the interviewer for their time and confirm the next steps. Once you hang up the call, pause for a few seconds to ensure that you have entirely left the call and that your microphone and camera are off.
Writing a thank-you letter is a nice and professional gesture—and can make a difference.
If you plan to send notes or additional questions to your interviewers, it is recommended that you do so as soon as possible. Recruiters often discuss job applications as soon as the next day, and sending them a thank-you letter would help refresh their memory of the Zoom interview with you.
Keep practicing these interview techniques as you search for a new job. By regularly putting yourself in the position of having an interview, you will get comfortable with the process and become more able to sell yourself to potential employers.
Need Help in Writing a Thank-You Letter?
If you have little to no experience writing a thank-you letter, don’t worry. A helpful tip is to ensure that your tone is courteous and genuine, without losing the professionalism. But if you need further help in writing one, we have listed the 10 best resume writing companies that offer this service to assist you with your job search.