With the world of remote working now the “new normal” for many of us who were used to working in offices; it feels like an age ago since we were able to work face to face with our colleagues, hang out around the water cooler or drop by a colleagues desk for a catch-up. If your new world feels tough, spare a thought for those who are currently looking for a new role, their challenges have increased significantly in the new on-line world.
Anyone who is currently on the hunt for a new role will know that it is very competitive in terms of getting through the filters and being selected for interview. Objective one achieved, there is then a new challenge of all interviews are being done virtually. This brings along a new set of challenges which many project management practitioners have never had to face before.
Interviewees need to make sure they are prepared for these types of interviews and build their understanding of how it all works and how to be successful.
Test, Practice, and Prepare for Plan B
When you have gotten your virtual interview secured you need to quickly find out what software will be required and make sure that you have the required software compatibility and internet speed to run it.
This may sound obvious but checking this before the interview will prevent you from having to try and fix an issue you are not prepared for and wasting the time of your interviewer.
As a backup plan you should have the chosen video calling software available on multiple devices. If you happen to need to do something over video at short notice or something goes wrong with your preferred device you will then have a backup option.
Even if this means having to do the interview via your phone at least you’re able to attend. Just let the interviewer know at the start of the interview.
Once you have everything set up you should ask the recruitment consultant you are working with (or a friend or family member) to help you and play the part of the interviewer and provide feedback. Doing this kind of test run is a good idea, especially if you are required to share your screen and a piece of work. This will reinforce your understanding of how the software and process work as well as providing important feedback about how you performed.
I would recommend practicing the above as much as possible. Knowing how to troubleshoot any issues reduces any potential stress that may be involved with this kind of interview.
Take it as seriously as a regular interview.
One thing I have noticed people saying during times of lockdown is “remote working can feel like it’s less formal than being in the office”.
I’d agree, however, virtual interviews need to remain as formal as they always were. You need to make sure you:
- Dress smart
- Position yourself in a well lit, quiet location with a neutral background
- Prepare as you would for any interview
- Use a fixed camera and not “selfie-style” (unless you’re using this due to the reasons mentioned above).
- Arrive on time, or even a minute early!
It’s all about making a good first impression. Another way of doing this is through your “virtual handshake”. This is a mix of verbal and body language cues to use throughout the interview.
The handshake is usually the first point of contact when meeting somebody new in the professional world and is often your first chance to impress. So in a virtual environment you need to find alternative ways of doing this.
Given so much of how we communicate is non-verbal you need to pay attention to how engaged you come across. It can be easy to look distracted or not interested in video call situations so this is a very important factor and is something you should get feedback on when practicing your virtual interview skills.
Ready to Start Applying? Register with Arras People
We would strongly recommend that you register with Arras People for FREE or update your profile so the team has your latest details when we are looking to match project management practitioners to our open roles. We will never share your details without speaking to you first in order to meet high compliance standards.
Unsure what to do next? We also provide 1-2-1 career advice sessions to help you in all aspects of your job search or career development. YES, we do have the capacity to run these on video conference.