A Skype Interview can be the first impression an employer has of the candidate. Just the way people form 10 impressions about you within seconds of meeting you in person, the same impressions will be made via Skype. Here's some tips on making a powerful impression in a Skype interview.
You can't wing an interview, preparation and rehearsing is critical. The first thing is to conduct research on the company. Read the latest company and industry news, and check the profiles of key people in the organization including your interviewer. Having little or no knowledge of the company is the most common mistake job seekers make during the interview. Anticipate possible questions and rehearse answers to common interview questions. Prepare questions for the interviewer.
Decide what you are going to wear for the interview. In a recent survey 65% of bosses indicated that clothing could be a deciding factor between two almost-identical candidates. Men should wear a suit, crisp traditional shirt and tie. Pay attention to the shirt collar collar, making sure it fits correctly and is not too tight or loose. Select a quality tie that complements the suit and shirt, avoiding anything too flashy. Your tie should hang straight and the knot should be up against the collar. Pay attention to your grooming, making sure your hair is neat, facial hair is trimmed, and nails are clean.
For women select a suit jacket in a more traditional colour with a top or blouse. No low cut tops that show cleavage. This is not the time to be ultra fashionable or avant grade. The clothing you select should complement you but not distract the interviewer. Makeup and nails should be tasteful avoiding extremes. Take the time to style your hair so that you look professional. Accessories should be kept to a minimum.
Download and install Skype if you don't already have it. Test it out and become familiar using it. Select a professional sounding user name. Select a quiet room to use the day of the interview. Set it up so that you have a clean uncluttered background. Set up your computer in an area so that you have a plug in. Prop your computer so that it is at eye level, and set up your lighting. Experiment with the lighting until you are satisfied.
Do a few dress rehearsals with friends. Pay attention to how you look and how you sound. If you are using a headset make sure it's working correctly. Ask for feedback from friends as to how you could improve. Pay attention to your body language. Remember to smile, look directly into the camera, sit up with good posture, avoid nervous gestures such as touching your face or playing with your hair and avoid fidgeting.
DAY OF THE INTERVIEW
Check you equipment to ensure that everything is working correctly. Remind everyone of the time of the interview and ask them to be quiet. Turn off additional phones and put pets in other rooms. Be online and prepared 15 minutes before the interview. Have a pen and paper handy, your notes and a glass of water. Do some "power posing" to lower your stress levels.
DURING THE INTERVIEW
Greet the interviewer with a genuine smile. Pay attention to your body language. Be enthusiastic when talking and show humor, warmth and interest. One of the common mistakes in a job interview is not asking for the job. At the end of the interview thank the interviewer and send a thank you by email.
Get our checklist on How to Master a Skype Interview.