Skype is a free software application that allows people to share experiences via text, voice and video. One of the newest experiences people are sharing on Skype is the virtual job interview. Why not? Skype interviews are an inexpensive way for interviewers to meet with potential job applicants in the virtual face-to-face environment.
These Skype interviews are helping companies keep recruiting costs down as well as widen the candidate pool when geography and schedules just don’t allow for face-to-face interviews.
Imagine you are a college student on a study abroad trip for a semester, but still want to meet companies for internship interviews back at home? The Skype interview could be the perfect solution.
In an article for the Red and Black student newspaper at the University of Georgia, Cecil Bentley, Director of External Relations at the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication, said that their career center staff works with students to prepare for Skype interviews the same way they work with students to prepare for other job interviews. “Students should treat it like a normal interview with common sense dress,” says Bentley.
It is not only college students who are doing Skype interviews. Some college Human Resources offices are using Skype interviews to have faculty do teaching demonstrations.
In addition to Bentley’s career advice on dress, there are some other tips to help job seekers prepare for Skype interviews.
1. Wear solid colors. Patterns can distract the interviewer.
2. Stay professional and stick with interview attire. Skype interviews are still interviews and though there may be strong inclination to dress in pajamas for the virtual face-to-face interview; it is not professional.
3. Find a quiet place with a solid color backdrop. Keep in mind the size of the frame that will capture the image.
4. M ake sure a good microphone is used so that you can be heard. Experiment with a headset versus the stand alone or built in microphone.
5. Enunciate clearly.
6. Be aware of lighting in the space.
7. Clean up the area that might be captured by the web cam.
8. Record your Skype interview so that you can learn from the process.
9. Make sure the Internet connection is good and won’t drop.
10. Watch body language. Remember that for a Skype interview, you are in a relatively small space and too much movement could take the interviewee out of the shot.