The Covid-19 pandemic has presented organizations in the environmental services industry with definite challenges when it comes to hiring. For obvious reasons, many organizations hesitate to bring in applicants for traditional in-person job interviews (and many candidates hesitate to accept them when offered). Thankfully, technology has advanced to the point where real-time video interviews are possible — and, in all likelihood, they’ll continue to be popular long after the pandemic ends. It makes sense to learn how to interview well by video, and today I’ll share a few tips to make sure it goes smoothly.

For the Job Candidate

If you’ve been working for a while, you may understand the expectations for traditional interviews — but what about when they’re conducted on a screen? You’ll still need to ensure you carve out time in your schedule to interview, choose appropriate attire, research the company and prepare suitable questions to ask the hiring manager.

However, video interviewing has additional requirements, such as:

  • Prepare your environment. Don’t assume you won’t have distractions just because you’ve scheduled the time. This is particularly true if you interview from home! Think about any possible distractions that could occur, such as a dog barking or a package delivery, and try to ensure you have a quiet space to interview where you won’t be interrupted.
  • Test your connection. If you don’t have a reliable Wi-Fi internet connection, consider using a wired connection for the duration of your interview. Equally important: Test your internet connection before the call.
  • Try the platform. It’s important to familiarize yourself with the video platform used to conduct the interview. Some platforms may require you to create an account first, which could take time and potentially cause you to be late signing in.
  • Stay mindful of body language. Don’t assume the interviewer won’t pick up on body language just because you’re interviewing via video. You’ll still want to make eye contact with the interviewer and avoid things like fidgeting that can be distracting during the call. Smiles and nods can go a long way to forming a connection during a video interview.

For the Hiring Manager

Many hiring managers may find themselves conducting video interviews for the first time in their career, and it can take time to adjust. Luckily, video interviews aren’t new to everyone, and there are some best practices you can follow to get more out of the experience:

In-person meetings are quickly becoming a thing of the past, and that is unlikely to change even when the Covid-19 virus is under control.

  • Be flexible. Keep in mind your applicants likely have to prepare their environment for a video interview. They may have children that are home schooling and a spouse that isn’t home until later in the day. Try to be flexible with your availability when it comes to scheduling a video interview.
  • Utilize user-friendly technology. Many job seekers aren’t familiar with video interviewing technology, especially if you’re interviewing a candidate for a skilled-labor role. Offer a technology that is easy to use and doesn’t require a lot of time to download or access online. If you use a platform that requires login credentials or other additional means of access, be sure to share that information with the applicant before the scheduled interview.
  • Put your applicant at ease. Video interviews can still be very stressful and intimidating, especially for those applicants who may have never had a video interview before. Spend the first few minutes of the interview putting your applicant at ease and creating rapport with them. Let them know this process is new to everyone and you appreciate their willingness to participate in it.

We’re all living in a world where more of our work is being done remotely via telephone and video calls. In-person meetings are quickly becoming a thing of the past, and that is unlikely to change even when the Covid-19 virus is under control. Even though it can be hard, I encourage you to jump in and solidify the skills you need to embrace video interviewing.