Skype interviewing etiquette vastly differs from the standard in-person or telephone interviews, for both the candidate and the recruiter. Here are tips for surviving a Skype interview:
1. Set-up and test everything!
There is a great test feature for Skype that will allow you to test the connectivity, the volume and run a test call. Ensuring you are properly set-up before the call is just as vital as arriving punctually to an in-person interview.
2. Check your Surroundings.
Check out the camera’s current view, be sure to prep the room & the visible background of your selected interview setting. Too much background clutter can distract the interviewee/er from the conversation. Prep the room accordingly, with special attention to the lighting, the room sound and camera angles; these small efforts came create a professional environment. Poorly lit rooms, with bad noise echo is a negative distraction to both parties. The slightest details such as camera angle can also create drastic difference in how the other party views you; sitting too close, too far or having the camera point upward towards you nose, can leave a lasting impression.
Keep your eyes focused on the actual camera and not the screen. This would be equivalent to making eye contact with whom you are speaking with in person. The great benefit of not actually being in person will allow you to have cue cards or reminders or points you want touch on.
4. Focus and cut out distractions.
Much like an in-person interview, turn off your cell phone and all other apps on your computer. Avoid pop ups and interrupting sounds during the interview.
5. Dress to impress.
Don’t make the mistake of going too casual just because you aren’t meeting in person, because the camera will catch the smallest details.
6. Put your best foot forward.
From the moment a resume is read, or an email is exchanged- you’ve begun to create your first impressions. Your email, signature line, social media profile photos and Skype name all play a large role in creating the first impression long before the interview takes place. Always keep your emails professional, simple and easy to recite back. Any photo attached to your Skype account or linked by your social media accounts should also remain professional.
7. Plan ahead.
Be sure to jot notes down on points you want to touch on. Don’t be afraid to mention your notes in the meeting. The other party won’t be able to see what you’re looking at, so it’s okay to let them know your reviewing notes, the job description or a resume. Think ahead by planning a closing statement, whether it’s to follow up in a specific time frame or details about the next steps. Be sure to wrap the meeting with a proper ending. Then turn off your camera.
8. Follow up.
Connect with the other party on professional social media platforms. If you are the interviewee, ‘Follow’ the company you are interested in. If the company or interviewer has a Skype account, chances are they have multiple social media accounts.
Much like any interview, do your homework. Print the resume or the job description, highlight and jot down any questions a head of time. Check out the company or candidate online and view their professional media profiles. Even their ClearanceJobs profile has a unique customizable page. The ClearanceJobs profile allow hyperlinks to other accounts or sites, specialized quotes and the ability to add multiple document attachments; resumes, letters of recommendations, copies of certifications. Click around and get to know your audience, after all the candidate is interviewing the company just as much as the employer. Both parties are looking for the right fit.