Seven pointers for making the best of your video interview.
Oh, and this interview will be done by video. You have a webcam, don't you?
Does that statement bring visions of bad YouTube videos and Marco Rubio's water glass flying in front of your eyes?
The use of video interviewing is growing rapidly. It's a convenient and cost-effective choice for organizations looking to streamline the talent acquisition process. Great for HR, but how do you make it work for you?
It's totally different from a phone screen or in-person interview. And if you don't recognize the differences, it can come back to haunt you. First, the different types:
The video screen. Some companies are using standardized video interview services as an entry-round screening tool. In this approach, the exact same questions are asked to every candidate, whose answers are then scored and reviewed. The candidate generally has 30 seconds to review the question and a preset response time. Usually the questions are computer-delivered: in other words, you're not talking to a live human being. I call this the video screen - think a one-sided screen test, not a conversation. Such tests are usually compiled into libraries for future reference.
The video interview. A true video interview will be just what the name implies - you and another person, having a Q&A/conversation. The only difference is that you are doing this by Skype or webcam, not face-to-face. Here you are having a real conversation, the more natural give-and-take. While the interviewer may have some preset questions (all good interviewers do), the response time will be more open. Getting real-time feedback from the interviewer in the form of verbal and visual cues can be invaluable.
The video resume. This is a way to present yourself. It augments (or in some cases, supersedes) a paper resume. You totally call the shots here - the content, the visuals, and the format. It's like a visual elevator pitch. Think of a dating site video - this is your way to separate yourself from the pack. My company started using these way back in 2003 and 2004. For some people it really helped seal the deal.
Some pointers for making the best of your video interview:
A video interview is a real interview. And like a "real" interview, blow a question, show up late, be unprepared, and your application will get tossed to the bottom of the barrel. And given that this video interview can be reviewed and rated and shared throughout the organization, endlessly, it can be even more important than your typical phone screen.
You never get a second chance to make a first impression - and that is even more important if your embarrassing first impression winds up on YouTube.
Video image on home page via Shutterstock.
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