More employers are using Skype to help alleviate busy schedules and still get face time with job prospects. While Skype interviews can be convenient because you can do them from multiple locations, they open up a whole new cast of considerations that aren’t present in the controlled environment of an employer’s office.
HealthCare Scouts has prepared some tips to help you navigate your first Skype interview.
Tone down your Skype profile
While you’re chatting with friends, a hip and creative Skype profile is fine, but when you’re trying to make an impression with an employer go conservative. Make sure your photo and your username aren’t offensive or too far out there. You can also create a free professional Skype account. That may be the way to go so that you don’t give the wrong impression in the interview.
You still need to dress for success
Don’t dress down just because you are not going into an office. Even if you are at home, dress as you would for a traditional face to face interview from the top of your head down to your shoes. You can never tell what details may come up, so play it safe and go with traditional interview attire. If you’re not sure what to wear, see our interview dress tips.
Focus on the camera, not the computer screen
With a view of yourself and the interviewer on the screen, you may not know where to focus your attention. However, you should fix your eyes on the camera and address it as you would the interviewer.
Don’t have other computer programs running at the same time
Forget about Facebook, Twitter, e-mail, instant messaging, or any audio or video programs. Shut every other program down on your computer except Skype. You don’t want Facebook notifications or tweets distracting you from the interview.
Control the surroundings
You want a quiet place to do the interview with no background distractions. Make sure you test the view behind you so there isn’t anything to distract the interviewer. You may want to do a test with someone to get their point of view.
Ask a friend to help you practice
Try a practice interview with a friend so that you can become comfortable with how Skype works. Familiarize yourself with the Skype interface, getting to know the controls and where everything is at so you don’t look like a first-timer during the interview. This is a good time to practice looking at the camera instead of the screen.
Prepare notes to keep you on track
While it’s easy to be distracted by the technological aspect of a Skype interview, remember you are there to show your experience and talents. Take notes to help you to talk about the most important parts of your background. Also, keep a copy of your resume handy so you aren’t caught off guard by questions about it.
Build a fortress of solitude Ask the people you live with, friends and family, to give you some privacy while you are engaged in the interview. Make sure pets are far away from you and your camera. While your dog may be interested in what is going on, he probably won’t help you get the job.
Build a fortress of solitude
Ask the people you live with, friends and family, to give you some privacy while you are engaged in the interview. Make sure pets are far away from you and your camera. While your dog may be interested in what is going on, he probably won’t help you get the job.