Tips for Online Interviews

Many of the how-to’s on conducting a successful online interview focus on how many of the “rules” of interviewing in person still pertain to Skype. But we trust your judgment-- that you will know to wear pants and to be alone and in a quiet environment during your interview. Instead, here are some tips that focus on the technical bits that do indeed catch people:

  • Check your connections and test them twice. Find a friend (not on your same connection) and make sure there are no incongruities (room echo, etc.) that you need to account for. 
  •  Whenever possible, make sure your main light source is above you or in front of you.
  • Of course you want to watch the people on the screen when they are talking, but if you need a place to focus when speaking, remember that the camera is your eye contact, not the screen.
  • Try to have your camera at a good height. If you’re using a laptop, consider putting it on a pile of books, for instance. 
  • It is fine to use a mic and/or headphones. We care most about hearing you and you hearing us! Most cell phones come with a headphone/mic combo that can be plugged into any computer.
  • Whenever possible, use an ethernet connection, rather than wireless
  • Assume something might go wrong— so just in case: 
      •  Have your phone handy in case video just won’t cooperate.
      • There are almost always delays, and it is fine to pause a bit between points, 
      • Don’t be afraid to mention when you can’t hear, etc.

    Good luck!