Although a Skype interview seems like it’s virtually the same as an over-the-phone interview, there are a few more things that you need to consider.
Despite it being a seemingly meaningless thing, ensure that you have an appropriate username on your Skype account. Your potential employer will be looking at every little detail in order to determine whether you’re right for the job, therefore an inappropriate username could really jeopardise your chances.
As aforementioned in my ‘How to handle a phone interview’ article, dressing the part is key. Not only will you feel more confident, you’ll look professional and prepared. Now, I’m not implying that you should wear a suit and tie, but ensure that your outfit smart, as well as ironed if necessary (you don’t want to appear to be a messy person).
Once again, appearance is crucial. The background of your video call should be tidy, as well as being at an appropriate noise level. You should never conduct a Skype interview in the middle of a busy place, as this will appear to be unprofessional and, quite possibly, rushed. Also, making sure that you can hear the interviewer will help you to avoid any awkward moments… hopefully. Using headphones might help, but this is more about personal preference. In addition to this, good lighting is necessary. If you’re in a dark room, you might look a little shady, for lack of a better term, which isn’t the ideal impression you want to give to an employer. So, try to have a good set up, with your notes (if you need them) in front of you, with decent lighting and a good angle – nobody wants that double chin look.
Preparation is really important, hence why I’m stressing this so much. Ideally, there should be no distractions, so let anyone in your house know that you shouldn’t be interrupted, and turn your phone to silent. Don’t rush the call either, so make sure you have plenty of time either side of it, just in case they decide to call you a little earlier or it runs over the suggested time.
Furthermore, it might be worthwhile checking that everything works on your computer/laptop before the call happens. You could have a friend call you beforehand so that you can adjust the sound settings and make any other necessary changes. All of these little things will help to make you look really well-prepared, and it means that you don’t have to worry about that sort of thing while dealing with any potential nerves.
Even if you’re not a regular user of Skype (or a user of Skype at all), it is a very useful platform for employers to get to know you before they meet you in person, so make the effort to carry out the call nonetheless. By doing so, you’ll prove to your interviewer that you’re a quick learner, and will rise to a challenge – a useful skill in any career. Being able to adapt to new technology will undoubtedly help you too, giving you more experience.
Additionally, there is a chance that you could run into some unavoidable technical difficulties. Try not to panic, and don’t be afraid to suggest calling your interviewer back. You can use this moment to demonstrate your problem-solving skills, while showing that you can remain composed, which is key if you’re going for a role in which you’d have to deal with customer complaints, or anything along those lines.
While the call’s happening, feel free to ask questions, and make sure that you’re answering any that you’re asked as well. You need to give indications that you’re paying attention: from a nod of the head to a verbal response. You may have done a bit of research about the company beforehand, so feel free to slip in some of the information you’ve discovered into the conversation. However, you need to be certain that it’s helps the conversation to flow and portrays you in a good light, rather than seeming like you’re blurting out facts through nerves.
Stay calm! Take advantage of the fact that you’re in the comfort of your own home (or whatever venue you’ve chosen) and relax – but not your posture. Ask any questions you need to, and thank your interviewer before the call is ended, then keep your fingers crossed.
Post by Georgia Foote.
Hi, I’m Georgia. I’m an oversized cardigan and makeup enthusiast, with a love for pouring my heart out on paper, and watching The Handmaid’s Tale on repeat.