Video Interviews

Interviews are nerve-wracking, there is no doubt about it, but when you properly prepare the experience can become a lot easier. There are many tips and trick online for how to prepare for all types of interviews—one-on-one interviews, group interviews, case study interviews—but what about video interviews? With today’s technology, more companies are turning to video interviews to help with the interview process. While these interviews may be more convenient for the company and interviewee, it does not make them any less intimidating. Read more for pointers to prepare for and nail your upcoming video interview.

Before the Interview

With any style of interview, you want to prepare ahead of time. For video interviews, you will want to do all of the standard preparation, research the company, practice your answers, and have your resume up-to-date. Additionally, you will want to test the software that you’ll be using on the day of the interview. There are many types of video interview software, some of which include:

These are just a few of the most common software. Ultimately, you’ll decide the best software with the employer. Once determined, test how the software looks, how you look on camera, and start getting comfortable with talking on camera. Many of the software will let you do a practice video, or you can call a friend and do a practice interview. Talking to a screen feels strange at first so practicing before the real interview will help you feel more confident and prepared. Finally, check that you have everything you need for the interview. Check items such as webcams, microphone or headset, and a quiet area to interview in. If you are missing any of these items, many can be borrowed at a local library or bought online.

Day of the Interview

It is the big day. You have practiced and prepared and are ready to get this position, but first a few quick things. When getting dressed pay attention to your attire. Besides following the basic guidelines for proper interviewing attire, there are a few additional things you want to keep in mind. Since you are on camera, your clothing may appear in an odd or distracting manner. Try to avoid wearing:

  • Small patterns
  • Bright or neon colors
  • The same color as your background

Any of these may appear distracting on camera, or cause you to blend in with your surroundings. If you are unsure how your attire will look, do a test video before your interview to check.

Next, make sure the area you are interviewing in is clean and neat. Check to see if there is anything distracting or unprofessional in the view of the camera before starting the interview. Try to pick a blank wall or a non-distracting background like a bookcase and avoid sitting in front of a window. Also, double-check the lighting in the room. If needed, bring in a floor or table lamp to get rid of unflattering shadows. Finally, make sure you have all of your materials ready. One of the advantages of not being face-to-face with an interviewer is you can print out any documents you may need to look at. Make sure these are all ready to go prior to the start of the interview.

During Your Interview

Now is your time to shine. During the interview, there are a few keys to success. First, make eye contact. Look at the person on the screen and do your best to not be distracted by watching yourself in the corner. Staring at the middle of the screen may feel weird, but it mimics eye contact for the person on the other end. Also, make sure to smile. It is harder to convey emotions over video than in person, so make sure to show your interest by smiling during the interview. Finally, speak clearly. Since you are speaking over a microphone if you talk quickly or in an unclear manner, it will be hard for the interviewer to understand you. Make sure to speak slowly and annunciate your words.


Now that you have prepared, you are ready for your interview. You have prepped yourself and your equipment prior to your interview. You are familiar with the software, and are dressed for success. You are seated in a professional, quiet environment ready to answer the call from your future employer. So smile, take these tips and tricks, and prepare to get the job of your dreams.

By Liz DeNoncour
Liz DeNoncour