We all know the usual interview process, maybe a round of phone interviews, an aptitude test or technical assessment, then the onsite invitation. You get dressed up in your “power outfit”, you know, the one that makes you feel like you own the place, and head into the office for an interview. You meet the team, make small talk, tour the building, and if all ends well, you land the job! Well, throw all that out the window…with social distancing now in place, virtual interviewing is becoming the new normal.
So whether you were already in the market for a new job, or have recently been let go due to COVID-19, the good news is that many companies are continuing to hire! While you can no longer meet in person, it is still possible to go through the entire hiring process virtually. So what should you expect?
Even though you are interviewing at home, many interviews will be done over some form of video conference format (i.e. Google Meets, Skype, Zoom, etc.); therefore you still need to present yourself as professionally as you would in an office. This can be shown in the way you dress and your body language. Remember to sit up, smile, and keep the camera eye level. Be sure to test your equipment, turn off notifications, and create good lighting.
Even with the best preparation, interruptions may still come up like barking dogs or rowdy kids. If you feel that it is likely to happen, you may want to apologize ahead of time to the interviewer and let them know you’ve done your best to be free from distractions.
Make a Connection and Learn More
It can be more difficult to stand out from other applicants when meeting virtually. Find opportunities to show your passion for the field, or have a side conversation about a common interest with the interviewer to make a lasting impression on them.
Learning about the company’s culture happens organically at the office, you can see and feel it. Take time during the interview to learn more about the culture both on the team you’ll be joining, and of the company as a whole. Ask how the on-boarding process will occur during the stay at home orders, and how team members keep connected remotely.
Put your quarantine time to good use
There are many ways you can use your time during quarantine productively. Update your LinkedIn account with the most recent information regarding your employment history, and list any related skillsets. Expand your network on LinkedIn by liking, commenting, and posting insightful content. The bigger your network, the easier it is for recruiters to find you.
You can use this time to enhance current skills or learn new ones. Participate in free courses from Lynda, Coursera, and SkillShare to really build up your skill sets. Attend free webinars from Career Contessa and Hubspot to learn more about different topics from interviewing tips to marketing skills.
Virtual interviewing may seem strange at first, but as you learn this new “normal”, you’ll find that you can navigate the hiring process virtually just as easy as in person. You may even prefer it!
This article was written by Lindsey Jonas, one of InMotion Hosting’s all-star recruiters.