3 tips for remote interviewing in a pandemic
Whether you’ve got tonnes of experience under your belt or the current pandemic is the catalyst for you to begin your first batch of remote interviews, we’ve got 3 tips for remotely video interviewing candidates.
Prepare, prepare, prepare
In a face to face interview, there are plenty of things to discuss. The social lubricant makes the conversation flow and the conversation can meander in any direction both interviewee and interviewer like it to go.
During a video interview, the atmosphere is often more formal.
There are fewer opportunities to relax into the conversation. Delays in connection, limited technology and a lack of rapport can make it a much more challenging experience.
That’s why it is essential to prepare in advance.
No one from reception will call to announce arrivals, giving you a handy reminder of names.
You won’t get the few minutes’ walk to a meeting room to make your first impression.
For remote interviewing, it’s not enough to peruse a CV and have a few questions pop into your head as you go, just trusting your gut on whether the candidate seems right for your organisation.
You’ll need to really pick through the detail, plan a strategy and pinpoint any areas you’re certain you’d like to discuss. It makes sense to always write your questions down in advance.
It’s also much harder to form a strong, lasting impression from a video interview. Unless videos are recorded, it’s a good idea to keep good notes about both your concerns and your areas of highest satisfaction.
Once you’ve interviewed a string of candidates, you’ll be relying on good notes to make your decisions.
Don’t forget, candidates will be expecting feedback so good notes pay dividends in that respect, too.
Keep your background in mind
Interviewing from home can present many obstacles. One of the biggest is where to conduct the interview.
Think in advance; what is going on behind you? What can the interviewee see?
Ideally, they shouldn’t be able to see anything. Find a seat as near to as plain a wall as possible.
No washing up, no questionable art, no controversial bookshelves as a backdrop!
If this is a real challenge for you, many video conferencing platforms have template backgrounds for you to use. Just be careful not to become a potato like one boss, who went viral.
It can be difficult to maintain your professionalism at home, but these small considerations will aid you in your mission.
Find a quiet spot
Of course, a lockdown situation isn’t the best time to be conducting a video interview from home. These are unprecedented times.
To maintain a veneer of professionalism it helps to have as little background noise as possible.
It will mean asking your housemate to turn down their current favourite Prodigy track.
It might mean telling any children present that your chosen place of work is off limits.
Don’t underestimate the power of a good old-fashioned door lock.
Failing that, a well placed chest of draws might do the trick!
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