In the technology driven world we currently live in, we wanted to emphasize guidelines and tips for candidates when they are preparing for interviews via SKYPE. (Historically, we had assumed some of these were “common sense” until we had a first for our firm….a candidate participate in a SKYPE interview in her PJs ????)
Tip #1. Dress the part. Just because you’re not on-site does not mean you should wear what you wore to bed last night. You should wear whatever you would wear to an in-person interview. And, please shower. Dressing like you’re going in for an in-person interview will help you feel like you’re at an in-person interview.
Tip #2. Think about your location. What’s behind you does matter. Set up a clean, neutral background with good lighting. Avoid basements and sitting in front of a window, unless you want to look like someone whose identity is being protected. Avoid public spaces, unless you don’t have the internet at home. If you’re in a busy, public place because you don’t have the internet, let your interviewer know by acknowledging that you are in a noisy location.
Tip #3. Use a headset. If you have one, use it, especially if you are in a public place. Your computer picks up a lot of background noise. By using a headset, they will be able to hear you more clearly and with less distracting background noises.
Tip #4. Maintain Eye Contact. Look directly at your webcam – not the screen. It will make you seem present and personable. It ensures your eyes don’t drift to the video of yourself in the bottom corner.
Great tip: Place your laptop on a stack of books to get the camera at eye-level.
Tip #5. Handle any technical issues calmly. Things can go wrong. Your interviewer understands that. If something does happen, remain calm and friendly while you troubleshoot. Don’t be afraid to ask to hang up the call and try again if your Skype is freezing up. It will demonstrate that you can handle a stressful situation.
Tip #6. Avoid avoidable technical problems by practicing beforehand. Make a test call to a friend, family member, etc. sometime before your interview to make sure your audio and camera are working properly. Ask them how you sound, if they can see you clearly and how the lighting is, etc.
Tip #7: Eliminate interruptions. That’s not just telling other people to steer clear. It’s turning off any notifications on your computer. Silencing your phone. Closing your mail client, Facebook. AIM.
Bottom line is this: treat a Skype interview as you would any in-person interview. Be sure the interviewer knows that you are listening, in addition to preparing and asking well thought out questions. Be sure to follow up with a thank you note upon the completion of your SKYPE interview.
About Accountability Resources
Accountability Resources is a locally owned, Austin based search firm specializing in the placement of Accounting and Finance professionals, which includes permanent placement, contract/ contract to hire services, and executive consulting. We are a market leader, with over 100 years combined experience with our recruiters having a very strong accounting technical foundation including CPA designations and Public Accounting Experience. We have been named the top Executive Search Firm in Austin by the Austin Business Journal, one of the top 50 Fastest Growing Privately Held Companies in Central Texas and as one of the “”Best Places to Work in Central Texas”” for the last 10 years running. We look forward to partnering with you!
Serving Austin and surrounding areas.
6300 Bridgepoint Pkwy., Bldg. 1, Ste 250, Austin, TX 78730