In recent years, the efficiency and time-savings offered by virtual interviews have encouraged many employers to warm to the idea. While some hiring managers have been reluctant to transition toward video interviews, many have found the experience to be as personal as a face-to-face encounter.
And now, with the coronavirus pandemic limiting in-person connections, virtual interviews have become the go-to method for screening prospective hires. Thanks to today’s technological advances and video conferencing software such as Zoom, Skype, and Google Hangouts, healthcare organizations can continue the critical task of hiring.
All of this is music to the ears of folks on both sides of the staffing table. For job seekers looking toward career advancement, a change in locale, or simply the desire to see what a new aspect of the healthcare world has to offer, virtual interviews allow them to move forward with their career goals. At the same time, teleconferencing affords healthcare organizations the ability to continue, or if necessary, ramp up their recruiting and hiring during this most critical time.
The key to a candidate’s successful video-conferencing interview can be found in the 3 P’s – Plan, Prep, and Practice.
Look for an optimal location that will afford a quiet setting. While searching for the best spot, be mindful that a corner in the basement may not provide an adequate wi-fi signal to ensure a stable connection. Remember to make arrangements for the children and pets. Listen, and make adjustments, for background noises—the air conditioning, a fan, household appliances—that may be distracting during a call. Before the interview begins, silence the television, the home phone, and your cell.
Go a step further in location planning by creating a distraction-free background. A blank wall behind you will help the interviewer to focus on you rather than trying to determine the nature of that interesting painting or the meaning of that unique statue to the right. Steer away from creating a virtual Zoom background as well. While the serene beach scene background you created may spark some conversation, virtual backgrounds can be distracting and glitch. If a blank wall is not an option, choose a setting that exudes a business-like vibe, is clutter-free, and orderly. Opt for a good source of natural light, if possible.
Make wardrobe selection a part of your preparation as well. While the at-home scenario may nudge you toward a more at-home appearance, walk away from that notion. Dress the same as you would for an in-person interview. But do take advantage of knowing the color scheme of the on-camera background and choose an outfit that works well with the staged backdrop.
While it’s common to “rehearse” for an interview, a virtual meeting requires a test run of the technology as well. Ask a friend or colleague to initiate a video conferencing session utilizing the same platform to be used for the virtual interview. After assessing the lighting, the sound quality, the overall setting, and the internet connection, conduct a mock interview. The more challenging the questions asked by your friend/colleague, the better. And the more honest his/her assessment of your performance, the better. If possible, record the session and study the recording.
Many of the tips noted in the LeaderStat post, “Phone Interview Tips to Help You Get the Job” apply to virtual interviews as well, including—
- Place your resume in a spot where you can grab it quickly and be ready to discuss it.
- Wait patiently for your turn to speak.
- Be ready to discuss your strengths and weaknesses.
- Expect to field questions about your experience and qualifications.
There is no reason to be intimidated by a virtual interview. Instead, let the 3 P’s boost your confidence and put you at ease, so that the real you can shine through.