A Note from Ari: We are in trying times, with so much unemployment and more people using Zoom and other online communication platforms than ever before. Due to these hardships, I agreed to have a guest blogger write up a quick how-to resource for people who are looking for information on preparing for an upcoming job interview on Zoom. I have not fully looked into the linked resources, so use with caution. Enjoy!
Prepping for an interview is always a big process: from researching the company to picking out the right outfit, there’s plenty to consider beforehand. In this pandemic era, interviews are typically online, meaning you need to consider even more details such as getting the right equipment and ensuring you’re in a well-lit environment. Read on to learn how to prepare for a Zoom interview.
Research the company
Prior to your Zoom interview, be sure to spend some time researching the company and reading the job description thoroughly.
Try to get as familiar with the company as possible—hiring managers are impressed when a candidate exhibits a strong knowledge of the company during the interview. Write up a list of questions; most interviewers will leave time to allow for your questions at the end of the interview.
Another step in preparing for your interview is reading through the job description carefully. If applicable, write down how your experience will satisfy the position’s roles and responsibilities. It’s likely the interviewer will ask for concrete examples of your past experience, so coming ready with solid answers will help you answer questions confidently.
Get the right equipment
Doing interviews remotely requires some extra preparation, so be sure you have the right tools before you jump into the Zoom call for your interview.
If you don’t have a laptop or your current computer isn’t working well, consider getting a new one. Not only will it allow you to interview with ease, but it will also help you do your work more efficiently if you get the job. You can grab deals on popular laptops by finding sales, looking second-hand, or ask family members if they have something you can buy or have.
Note from Ari: if you have an older computer, or want to buy a very cheap laptop, consider putting a flavor of Linux on it to make it speedy. Ubuntu is my go-to recommendation, with lighter versions if your hardware is not so strong; or Elementary OS is a serious contender for any operating system.
Another piece of equipment that will help in your job interview is a webcam (product links are affiliate links). Even if your laptop has a camera, it might not be of high quality. Webcams can attach to your laptop or desktop computer and transmit high-definition video, which will impress your interviewers (note from Ari: I am currently using the Logitech c920 and am very happy with it: link to buy on Amazon).
Be sure to test all your equipment before your interview. Set up in a room in your house with ample lighting and privacy, and schedule a practice Zoom call with a friend to test your audio and video to make sure you’re not dealing with last-minute adjustments.
Choose the right outfit
While it may seem surface-level, it’s vital to have the right clothes. Even though your meeting is virtual, dress up as though you were meeting in person. Avoid brightly-colored clothing and large earrings. Aim to look professional: choose clothes that you would wear to your first day on the job if hired.
Sometimes it’s necessary to buy new clothes for an interview. New clothes have the power to instill confidence, so a new budget-friendly outfit might help you nail the interview and impress the hiring managers.
Remember your body language
While wearing the right clothes and responding with brilliant answers will be beneficial to helping you land the job, keep in mind that body language speaks louder than words.
Behavioral analysis experts say that nonverbal communication is powerful enough that it allows us to quickly make decisions about a person’s intentions and capabilities. This means it’s vital to portray interest and focus during your interview. You can do this even on Zoom: keep your arms down by your sides rather than crossed at your chest, keep your body still, and maintain your gaze at the camera.
As you prepare for your interview, remember these tips to help you succeed. Research the company thoroughly and be ready with intelligent, well-researched questions. Make sure you have the appropriate technology for the Zoom call and pick out a professional outfit. Finally, remember to portray interest and confidence through your body language to impress your interviewers.