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How to Ace a Remote Interview

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Teacher has lesson online on laptop. Female european tutor is teaching her students language online. Remote class and distance education at home on quarantine. E-learning via zoom.

Remote interviews may have become necessary during the COVID-19 pandemic, but now that the genie is out of the bottle, employers and job seekers are embracing the benefits of doing interviews over video chat.

For job seekers, the convenience of a remote interview is a trap. You may be able to take an interview in the comfort of your own home, but the way you present yourself still matters. Therefore, you should still take a deliberate and professional approach to have any chance of a remote interview. What are the best wWays to ace a remote interview?

Check the Overall Look

Many of us get anxious about appearing on camera, especially in front of strangers. However, you’re not expected to have a movie star presence when interviewing remotely. Your appearance and your background need to be unobtrusive.

Start by making sure your camera and microphone are working correctly. Then, take steps to prevent any audio or visual distractions. If construction or some other loud activity is being performed outside your home and noise is unavoidable, adjust your settings and explain your situation upfront.

Next, make sure you have a clear background. While a natural background implies trustworthiness and transparency, a virtual background shouldn’t disqualify you from getting the position.

Finally, make sure you have a good internet connection that will be maintained in the middle of your interview.

If you need a professional-looking setup, consider visiting a friend’s house or renting a meeting room through a coworking space.

Maintain Professionalism During the Interview

It’s crucial to come across as professional and organized during the interview. Start by being on time. Having a few notes going into the discussion for reference is OK, but you should avoid scripting answers.

Focus on answering questions directly using concise language. Refrain from belaboring a point or going off on unnecessary tangents. If you do, you not only risk saying something foolish, but you could also come across as someone who contributes to endless virtual meetings with their constant chatter. If brevity doesn’t come to you naturally, consider practicing it during your practice interview sessions.

Convey Your Unique Value

Every candidate is unique, but not everyone can convey their unique value to a potential employer. If you have in-demand skills or experience, convey that as best you can over the remote connection. Be prepared to send any links, articles, projects, and other materials that help convey your value over Microsoft Teams or Zoom during the interview.

Also, feel free to share a few personal details. Even if you are interviewing for a fully remote position, you still must work with people over email, text message, and video chat. If they can get to know you personally, it’ll make you a more compelling candidate.

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