As the pandemic continues to become the new normal for employees, it is becoming difficult for organizations to make proper hiring decisions during this time. As the COVID-19 continues to spread, recruiters are heavily dependent on online skills assessment platforms, phones, and video interviews to hire virtually. Virtual recruitment of potential talent has become the trend, but only 16% of HR professionals in the U.S. are prepared and have the means to adapt to a virtual recruiting and hiring process.
In this article, we review the best ways to ace your next virtual interview.
What is a virtual interview?
I thought you’d never ask! A virtual interview is a screening interview that takes place remotely, using AI technology like video interviewing tools, automated skills assessments, and even sometimes over the phone. The purpose of virtual interviews is to weed out unqualified candidates from the talent pool or to finalize candidates the same way as face-to-face interviews.
More employers are adopting virtual interviews in their recruitment process after realizing its benefits. Automated virtual interviews have proven to save organizations both time and resources for the initial screening of candidates.
Seven tips for acing virtual interviews
Interviews in general can be stressful and a nerve-wracking experience for candidates. With more organizations switching to virtual interviews for screening applicants, it can become a daunting task for several candidates.
Here are a few tips to reduce the stress and help you to set yourself up for success:
Test your Technology
It is important that you test your technology before the commencement of the interview. Employers often come across scenarios where the interview is interrupted because of the candidates facing technical difficulties. Make sure that you log in early and check if your wi-fi connection, camera, mic, and headset connection are working seamlessly with the interview platform.
Based on the current hiring trends, employers are on the lookout for candidates who are technologically savvy and possess basic computer skills, even when applying for non-technical jobs. It is imperative that you resolve technical issues to set a good impression.
Prepare for the interview
If you are going to sit through a video interview, prepare yourself in advance just as you would for a face-to-face interview. It is important that you practice answering questions about the organization, its mission and value statements, and the value that you can add to the role applied for. Preparing questions beforehand highlights your interest in the role and the organization which will help solidify and project your passion and interest in the organization.
If you are required to take a skills assessment, ensure that you are aware of the responsibilities of the role as well as have a clear understanding of the skills being tested. For example, candidates are frequently assessed for their cognitive abilities with tests such as the critical thinking test, logical reasoning test, and verbal reasoning test. Preparing early for such tests can give you an edge against other candidates.
Practice the tool
If you have access to video conferencing tools or other platforms, try out the different features available before your scheduled interview. This way, you will be familiar with the technology even before the interview begins.
Most skills assessment providers have sample questions or public questions for candidates to practice, as well as a virtual walk-through of the platform. This allows you to get a hang of the technology as well as understand the time constraints involved when completing pre-employment assessments.
Showcase your authentic self
Recruiters are on the lookout for the next top talent to join their organization. Unlike face-to-face interviews which are quite stressful, virtual video interviews provide candidates with the option of connecting with the hiring manager in a relaxed familiar environment. It is imperative that you showcase your authentic self and hold a conversation with your recruiter, so as to give them a glimpse of your personality and attitudes.
If you are scheduled for pre-recorded one-way interviews, try to honestly answer the behavioral and skill questions true to your knowledge.
The majority of interviewers believe that candidates should be eliminated from the recruitment process if they are not dressed appropriately for the interview.
Since first impressions matter, dressing appropriately for an interview, virtual or not, highlights your commitment to the position. It can be very tempting to dress casually for a virtual interview, but dressing professionally is a great way to mentally prepare yourself as well as be comfortable and confident for the interview.
Maintain a positive body language
Although certain virtual screening interviews do not require the candidates to be present in front of a camera, most of them still require candidates to behave professionally. Advanced HRTech platforms are now capable of detecting candidates’ tone, mood, facial expressions, body language, and choice of words. This allows employers to screen candidates based on their facial cues and body language.
Since such superficial measurements have made their way into the hiring process, it is important for you to leverage your body language and soft skills for employers to gauge your personality and behaviors.
Follow up with the HR team or the interviewer
It is a good practice to send a follow-up email after the interview, thanking the interviewer for their time and for answering your questions during the interview. Also, reach out to the HR point-of-contact or the hiring manager for follow ups if you haven’t received any information after the interview.
Due to the spread of the pandemic, smart virtual interviewing platforms have made it easier for both the applicants and the employers to connect from anywhere in the world. This disruption by technology in the field of HR has taken talent acquisition to the next level, enabling recruiters to process candidates faster and easier. In the end, the key to acing your next virtual interview is proper preparation and dedication. Keeping above the tips in mind will surely help to set you apart from other candidates.
Virtual recruitment is gaining pace steadily and it is safe to say that it is here to stay.