The latest news and advice from our recruitment experts.
In the rapidly evolving world of technology, it is to no surprise that employers are now taking advantage of the most commonly used video calling program, Skype. Employers are making the most of their vacant positions to conduct potential employee’s interviews via the Skype method. We think this is great! Not only is it cost effective but less time consuming as well.
Skype has created a raft of opportunities for a variety of industries – even allowing interviews to take place on the other side of the world, all in the real time. Skype itself is on the incline, with over 700 million minutes being used every day – with this number escalating significantly yearly, it is clear that this piece of programming brilliance is here to stay; reducing costs and changing the face of how employers conduct interviews.
For those of you like me, who have had very little to do with this particular piece of technology until recent months, this concept may seem a little daunting and overwhelming at first. However never fear, it’s more user friendly than you think.
Have you ever seen yourself on a computer screen or heard yourself speak? Well Skype interview prep 101 begins with getting this crazy phenomenon out of the way BEFORE your actual interview. Firstly have a play on Skype prior to the interview – trust us, this is not a vanity test you will thank your lucky stars you trialed this technique; look at yourself in the camera, hear yourself speak, try out different ways of sitting/camera views, and get to know how the program functions, in turn likely increasing your confidence and ensuring things run more smoothly during the actual interview.
During the interview, make sure you look directly at the camera and continue to look at yourself during the interview. By having your focus on the camera will portray to the receiver that they have your full and undivided attention. During the interview, having the picture of yourself closest to the camera lens, will ensure that even if your eyes wander it will cause minimal disruption to your interview.
Similar to an ‘in person’ interview, the way in which you conduct yourself is key. If you look the part, you will feel the part, first impressions count just as much (if not more) on Skype! The way in which you behave during the interview is seen very clearly by the receiver; the way you position yourself, where you put your hands and the way you sit.
The same guidelines apply when deciding where to conduct the interview. Think of your surroundings similar to a little stagecraft, clear away unnecessary clutter. A simple background will look the best on the receivers end. James Gould, Skype’s Global Staffing Manager, says take note of the lighting too. If your lighting is directly behind you, it may give of the impression that you are in a witness protection box, likewise if you are lit from above or below can give you an almost ghoulish appearance. It is therefore best to have natural light streaming in or a lamp that is aimed straight at your face from behind the computer or camera lens.
Do the background research on the role, make sure you are not reading from a script. In Skype prep 101, this is one of the first things the interviewer will discredit you on, make sure your language is natural, engaging and real. Would you take a Wikipedia article print out and read this verbatim in an ‘in person’ interview?
We cannot emphasize enough about being familiar with the program. Make sure all connections are strong and secure and you have a fully charged laptop battery (or plugged into power). Plug your internet cable in an Ethernet port as this can often be more stable than wireless. To reduce feedback, plug in headphones directly to ensure there is clarity of what is being said. A conversation revolved around, “Can you hear me?” is less than ideal.
Now that you have a secure connection, the perfect environment, brilliantly dressed and ready to go, make sure you are cool, calm, and collected, communicate slowly and clearly, follow Skype prep 101 and you will be guaranteed to have a successful Skype interview.