Posted June 19, 2012 by

5 Great Ways To Prepare For An Online Interview

Jessica Holbrook Hernandez of Great Resumes Fast

Jessica Holbrook Hernandez of Great Resumes Fast

As many companies fine-tune their hiring processes, they are embracing alternative ways to conduct interviews with candidates who may not reside in the same city. One of the more recent options is the online interview.

Companies have long conducted telephone interviews in place of face-to-face interviews, when needed. But now, with technology such as Skype available, employers can get as close as possible to the in-person interview experience. So how can you as a candidate prepare for this unique interview?

1. Know How the Online Interview Works

In order to get the most out of your interview, you’ll want to make sure you know in advance how it is going to work. Make sure you have all of the proper software downloaded to your computer, that your camera and microphone are working properly, and that you know exactly how to navigate the system. If possible, request information days in advance about the software you’ll need so that you can take some time to learn it before the interview starts.

2. Practice In Front of the Mirror

An online interview leaves you with the distinct disadvantage of not having your full body to do some of your communicating for you. As a talking head, you want to appear enthusiastic yet professional. To help you prepare for this role, it’s good to sit in front of your mirror and practice facial expressions. Also, consider conducting your interview over Skype with a friend while recording and then study it later.

3. Anticipate Interview Questions

With your face being one of your only representations in the online interview, you want to make sure your facial expressions don’t show uncertainty or hesitation when faced with a challenging question. A great way to avoid this issue is by reviewing the job posting, learning company information, and reviewing your own resume, cover letter, and application—along with sample interview questions you can find online—so that you can answer each question with confidence.

4. Create a Scenic Background

Of course, you don’t want to hold your interview in a cluttered office or junky bedroom. So choose an area that will appear professional to your interviewer. Consider sitting in front of a bookcase or next to a tall floor plant. Also, don’t forget to consider proper lighting. If your back is facing a window, the light could create a silhouette, making your face difficult to see.

5. Ensure Your Interview Will Be Conducted Without Interruption

Finally, if you have small children or noisy pets in the home, be sure that an adult is available to keep them occupied or completely out of the way so your interviewer won’t hear any background noise from them. Although you may be conducting the interview at home, you still want to maintain a level of professionalism at all times.

The great news is that employers are coming up with great ways to determine your qualifications while ensuring everyone’s convenience. So it’s up to you to make the most of that convenience by preparing for your very best interview—whether in-person or online.

It’s important to remember to brand your resume before applying to each new position for more information on branding check out my recent article 5 Key Areas to Target When Branding Your Resume. You can also get additional job search and career related advice by checking out our blog or following us on Twitter @GreatResume.

Author: Global resume authority Jessica Hernandez of is a former HR Manager who partners with professional- and executive-level candidates to create authentic, branded resumes and cover letters.

Article courtesy of the Recruiting Blogswap, a content exchange service sponsored by, a leading site for college students looking for internships and recent graduates searching for entry level jobs and other career opportunities.

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Posted in Advice for Candidates, Career Advice, Interviewing | Tagged Tagged , ,