(NEXSTAR Mediawire) — Finding a new job has never been easy – now, in the age of COVID-19, job seekers have to navigate new tools, such as Zoom to impress their prospective bosses. Here are ten tips to help you nail your next virtual job interview:
- Practice using Zoom – There are always going to be some aspects of a job interview that can’t foreseen, but knowing how to use Zoom shouldn’t be one of them. Find a friend or family member and set up a mock interview to make sure you know how everything works before it counts.
- Dress for the interview – It may feel a bit strange to put on your professional attire only to sit in front of your computer – but make sure you dress for the job, it lets the interviewer know you’re taking it seriously.
- Attention to lighting – Preview what you will look like before the interview – artificial light may change your skin tone, a window behind you could leave your face obscured in shadow or a bright light to your left or right could create a harsh, uneven look.
- Watch the angle – Remember where your camera is – if you’re looking down at your laptop, keep in mind that your interviewer is looking up at your chin and nose, which may not be the most flattering set-up.
- Use the mute button – Allow the interviewer to speak free of interruption from both the ambient noise or your neighborhood, just don’t forget to unmute when it’s you’re time to talk.
- Close other programs – There’s nothing like a series of juicy desktop notifications or chat popups to derail one’s chain of thought, so make sure Zoom is the only thing open. If you know you will need to share something web-based, either open it in a different browser or turn off notifications before the interview.
- Avoid distractions – When it comes to the things you can control, keeping distractions to a minimum is key. Have a loud dog? Make sure you are in a room as far away as possible from your pooch when the interview starts. If there are young kids in the house, try to make arrangements with your partner or family to have that time to yourself.
- Think about your background – Don’t forget that your interviewer can see what’s behind you, and if you opt for a virtual background make sure it sends the message you want it to.
- Remember the camera – It’s always tempting to talk to the face you seen on the screen, but just remind yourself that eye-to-eye contact will only be achieved if you look directly at the camera.
- Show up on time, but don’t overdo it – Punctuality is as important for a Zoom interview as it is for an in-person meeting, but remember that joining a Zoom call is more like walking into someone’s office than walking into a waiting room. Depending on the interviewer’s settings, joining too early might mean interrupting the interview before yours.
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