How To Prepare For A Virtual Interview In 2021
Martha Damerell 
4/1/2021
Job search has changed in the past couple of years, so has traditional interviewing. The trend towards virtual interviewing and job search has been growing in the U.S. for the past five years. Many companies began to look at the convenience and cost savings associated with virtual interviewing as an alternative to traditional interviewing. Many job seekers are looking at the convenience related to job search. With COVID-19, this trend in the job search has become more popular and practical. However, virtual interviewing is not as simple as connecting a webcam and talking with someone through the computer screen; there is so much more to a virtual interview. In this article, let’s break the idea of virtual interviewing apart and put it back together to have a clear understanding of this practice and learn how to be successful in your following interview. 
One & Two Way Virtual Interviews 
There are many online job search tools to help job seekers get their feet wet and succeed in the market. As we all know, the final and most glorious step of job search is a job offer. However; how, all offers come with an interview. Before any job seeker heads for a virtual interview, let’s begin by defining one-way and two-way virtual interviews. While both have their advantages, there are some disadvantages we should also consider and take notes of. 
How To Prepare for A Virtual Interview
In a one-way interview, to put it in simpler words - there are no personal interactions. It is also known as the Computer-Assisted Personal Interviews. The candidate logs into a site and answers a series of predetermined questions by recording or typing in their answers.

On the other hand, a two-way interview is when a candidate logs into a site, like Zoom or Google Meet and an interviewer, interacts directly with the candidate. This way of interviewing is more common and similar to a face-to-face interview.
Perks In The Implementation Of Virtual Interviews
Now that you know the difference between one-way and two-way virtual interviews, let’s talk about some facts about them and why companies implement them in their hiring process today. 
Safety
Of course, social distancing. While the government regulations brought changes to the world, they also changed the face of hiring and job search. Virtual Interviews allow both hiring managers and candidates to have a safe and stress-free environment and can easily connect through the help of technology. 

Larger Candidate Pool
Since remote working has become a new trend in these unexpected times, many job seekers consider applying for jobs in the broader geography. This also means that companies can consider a more extensive and diverse candidate pool while candidates consider opportunities without the necessity of relocating. A “win/win” for both sides.

Saving the Cost & Time
Virtual interviewing allows companies to talk with people from all over the world without the added expense of travel, lodging, meals, and, most importantly, travel time. Once you are done with the interview, you can move on to your next task instantly. Everything virtual can help you do things on time and in your own hands. 

Convenience 
Ask any HR professional what the most frustrating aspect of the interview process is, and they will say - scheduling. Coordinating times on various busy calendars cause interviews to be delayed - sometimes even for weeks! The new virtual interviewing trend reduces time substantially, as there will be fewer worries about days of lead time, delayed flights, and even schedule changes.

Tips for Candidates Before the Interview
Okay, imagine you have got yourself a virtual interview opportunity, how should you prepare?

Treat this just like a face-to-face interview because the interviewer will. You will have a chance to prove what a perfect addition to the company you will be.

Research 
Read about the company - website, recent news articles, press releases, and social media sites. Get an idea of their organization from the wealth of company information on the web. Also, research the interviewer. Use LinkedIn to see what affiliations they have, where they went to school, and find out if they have spoken at many conferences. JobSeer is an all-in-one for your knowledge in researching the company and the interviewer. Discover in-depth company insights and use its recruiters’ and employees’ contact finder to increase your chances of getting noticed during your job search. 

Come up with questions
Develop several questions about the company, products, services, and even questions for the interviewer to show that you are familiar and interested with their business. Thirty minutes of your time in research can give you valuable information and show the interviewer that you are serious about the company. 

In case you miss it, here are some useful interview questions you might want to consider to ask during your next interview.

Practice
Practice makes it better. Find general interview questions online and practice how you would answer them. Check out career coaches’ videos, LinkedIn posts, and podcasts to find out how to answer the most common interview questions. LinkedIn comes out with a feature called the LinkedIn Interview Preparation Feature to help candidates like you to prepare for a successful virtual interview. This feature is available for most users online, however, Premium subscribers might have the chance to receive exclusive expert answers. 

Double-check everything technical
One thing you don’t want is that you are fully prepared for an interview, but your wifi disconnected or your computer crashed. To avoid this, make sure the technical connections are stable before the interview. Make sure that your microphone and camera are working correctly. Other than checking all technical issues, also make sure you are on time and be enthusiastic. During your interview, look directly into the camera and speak clearly. Most importantly, be yourself, as authenticity always comes through.

Nifty Tools
There are several online tools to help you in your job search. One that you might want to consider is JobSeer. With one login, you can access five of the most popular job boards, upload your resume once and begin a thorough search. JobSeer matches your skills with the job requirements and lets you see how closely you match the job description. 

Landing a job offer is not solely how you craft your resume and cover letter, interviews are just as important. If you have a perfect resume or cover letter, and the interview was not pleasant, your chances in getting an offer will decrease. Therefore, as we are stepping into a more technologically advanced market, learning how to successfully conduct a virtual interview can go a long way. Job search strategies are endless, and so are virtual interviews. Strategize your job search and virtual interview skills can benefit your entire career. This article might be a way for you to get your feet wet for virtual interviews, but be sure to consult professionals for more detailed information. 

If you would like to know more information about virtual interviews and virtual job search, reach out to Martha Damerell on LinkedIn. 

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