24 Hours until Your Online Interview: Be Ready

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After submitting your resume and application materials, you receive a call from your potential employer—you’ve landed an interview. Congratulations! There’s only one concern; the interview will be taking place online and it’s scheduled for tomorrow morning.

Most companies give applicants a little more time to prepare than a single day, and even with the rise of video software and universal connectivity, most employers still prefer to bring candidates into the office for a face-to-face meeting whenever possible. But sometimes a position needs to be filled quickly, and sometimes distance, executive travel schedules, and remote hiring arrangements make the video interview a more practical and inexpensive option for both parties. When this happens, you’ll need to be prepared. Here’s a quick step by step guide that can get you up and running in only a few hours.

1. Assemble your equipment. Your most important step will be gathering what you need to make the conference happen. Be realistic; if you don’t own a webcam, you’ll need to buy or borrow one immediately or ask your potential employers for more time. Both options are acceptable, but make your decision and act on it quickly. You’ll also need to download Skype, open a Gmail account, or otherwise procure the software your employers would like you to use.

2. Assemble your attire. You’ll need to dress fully for the interview. Don’t assume the video format allows you to leave your pants off or the back of your hair unstyled. What happens if you need to move around while the camera is running? (Besides, it’s a good idea to remember the first rule of business attire: Shortcuts don’t fool anyone.) Choose an outfit or suit that contrasts well with your background.

3. Assemble your background. Try to remove all clutter and distracting objects from the scene.

4. Anticipate potential problems. If there’s a chance you may be drawn away by noisy pets or needy children, make arrangements for their care. Try to head off knocks at the door by making sure your friends and family members know that you’ll be busy during the hour of your interview.

5. Complete a dry run, or two, or five. Have a friend go through the process with you to make sure your equipment works flawlessly and your interview statement is polished and ready.

6. Finally, spend at least an hour or so researching the company and learning anything that might help you understand the business model and workplace culture you’ll be stepping into. When the moment arrives, make sure you have all the documents you’ll need on hand, including your resume.

Contact the Texas job search experts at CSS for more interview preparation tips and be ready for anything, whether your interview will happen online, in person, or by phone.

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