The Gentle Art of the Video Interview

7th April 2020

by Emma May, Director Operations and Employment


We have battened down the hatches.  If you look out on the streets, it would seem that commercial life has come to a complete standstill.  But look again: because behind closed doors, enterprise still continues.  Whilst acknowledging that recruitment has sadly considerably slowed, some activity still takes place, and companies have turned to remote video interviews instead.

It is not unusual to feel quite phased by video interviews: they seem somehow too remote and too intimate at the same time.  Here are some tips to help you master this medium.

  • Prepare and practise. Do think about the location in your home if possible.  A neutral background helps with few if any distracting personal items in the background.  Make sure you have had a dummy run with the technology.  This in itself will go a long way to calming your nerves.
  • We all know that the camera never lies, so you will be very visual and you should treat this very much as a person to person meeting, take the time to properly prepare as you would for a face to face. Dress as you would for an interview – at least your top half!
  • Be ready to go live a few minutes in advance of the scheduled time. Avoid interruptions, so disconnect other devices that may ring or send an alert.
  • Do try to make your personality stand out, but at the same time, don’t overdo it. Ideally you should be aiming to be yourself with just a tiny bit more for the camera.  Don’t hold back on the smiles, but do try to keep them real not manic!
  • This is a difficult one: try to look at the camera to the side of your device rather than the whole screen, and if your own image is in the corner, do try to avoid looking at yourself. This will make sure your eye contact is as strong as possible.  And be seated in just the way you would be for a face to face interview.
  • Now here’s a positive: you will definitely be able to have your notes to hand but I would suggest you keep them out of sight of the camera.

Wishing you good luck with this – and every other job seeking activity that you do!

And do be in touch for further advice and guidance