You have just received an email from the HR saying that you have got through the telephonic round, and up next is the Skype interview. You are totally excited about the next round but have no experience of a video interview. What would you do?
Well, for beginners, Skype interview is very common nowadays and you can ace it with a little preparation. Due to multi-location hiring and constraints owing to space and time, more and more employers are turning to Skype for conducting interviews. It is convenient, cost-effective and quick. In short, it is a win-win arrangement for both, the candidate and the interviewer.
So how do you prepare for a Skype interview? Here are 10 practical tips to guide you through the process:
1-Get your equipment ready
Technology facilitates a Skype interview and you must ensure high-speed internet connectivity for a smooth interview. Apart from this, a good HD web camera, microphone or in-built speaker with good sound quality are must-haves. The webcam should be positioned in such a way that enables you to look directly into it.
2-Dress does matter
If you are appearing for an interview, you have to be dressed well, whether you are meeting the interviewer in person or over Skype. Keep the dressing strictly professional and wear a neat hairstyle so that your face is visible well. In a Skype interview you need to wear colours such as blue, grey, green, mauve, black or white which look good on screen. Distracting shades like maroon, pink, deep red or orange are best avoided.
3-Ensure appropriate lighting in the room and choose a neutral backdrop
The room where you are sitting for the interview must have proper lighting. It shouldn’t be too bright or too dull. Ideally, there should be a light behind your screen so that your face is well lit. Along with the lighting, the room must also have a tidy look with neutral backdrop. A plain clean wall forms the best backdrop. However, if you are sitting in a cluttered room, you can consider hanging a plain sheet of cloth to cover it.
4-Maintain a clear voice and make eye contact
In a Skype interview, your voice is heard through microphone or speakers. Even the best quality microphone or speaker will not be able to deliver a good result if you do not speak in a clear voice and professional tone. Not just this, you must maintain proper eye contact with the interviewer. You must be particular not to read across anything else on the screen but look only at the interviewer. Eye contact shows your confidence and conveys the fact that you are attentive during the interview.
5-Pay attention to your body language
It’s not just about what you say, it is also about how you say and conduct yourself. During a Skype interview, you are visible till your waist, hence your shoulders and face have to do a lot of talking. Make sure that you don’t slouch. Maintain a straight posture but bend a little forward and nod when the interviewer is saying something important. This shows your interest in the conversation. A smile on your face is sure to make the ambience congenial and make you look relaxed. Keep your hands away from the screen and use it minimally during interview.
6-Avoid all distractions and chose a quiet place
The last thing you want during your interview is the sound of hammers and nail, a yelling neighbour, a wailing child or that of utensils in the kitchen. Choose a place with minimal noise and maximum serenity. The corner where you are taking the interview should also be cleared of any distracting decor, wall hangings, clocks or furniture. You must also close other applications running on your computer as they are sure to divide your attention. Too many running applications can also slowdown the Skype. In short, any probable thing that distracts you during the Skype interview needs to be removed.
7-Log in well ahead of time
You need to maintain punctuality even in a Skype interview, hence log in well before time. You may reconfirm the time with the HR prior to the interview in order to avoid confusion. Logging in after the interviewer is already there creates a negative impression. Moreover, logging in early also helps you do ensure that the internet connectivity, microphone, speaker or webcam are functioning well. Logging in ahead of schedule also helps you be calm and relaxed.
8-Practice a mock interview
Since this is your first tryst with a Skype interview process, you can choose to rehearse the same with a trusted friend or family member. The mock rounds will give you a heads up of the interview process and make you more confident. A few practise sessions will help you to understand your areas of strengths and weaknesses so that you can effortlessly sail through in the actual Skype interview.
If tackled properly, Skype interviews can leave a lasting impression in the mind of the interviewer. So prepare well, ace the interview and compel your prospective employers to hire none other than you for the desired role!