How to Prepare for a Virtual Interview

Virtual interviews are becoming more and more common in a world of social distancing. And even after social distancing ends, many employers will likely keep up with the practice because it is convenient for both candidates and hiring managers. Are you prepared for the world of virtual interviews?


Just as you would prepare for an in-person interview, spend time researching the employer ahead of your virtual interview, so you understand what they do, what they are known for, who their competitors are and how they are faring in the market.

Practice, Practice, Practice

Preparing for a virtual interview also involves practice. By thinking about and practicing answers to common questions, you will be more relaxed and confident during the interview. Just make sure that you aren’t working off of a script – you want to look prepared, not rehearsed.

Prepare Thoughtful Questions

When the interviewer asks if you have any questions for her, thoughtful questions send the signal that you are interested in the job and reinforce your fitness for the job. Ask questions like:

  • What types of people succeed here?
  • What is the management style of my direct supervisor?
  • What are the expectations of the new hire for the first 30, 60 and 90 days?

Test Your Tech

When the hiring manager sends you the link to your video interview, test it out immediately. Make sure all software is downloaded and functional and test your microphone and speakers, as well.

Also, triple-check the date, start time and time zone for your interview. There is no excuse for being late for a virtual interview, and your interviewer may be in another time zone.

Prepare Your Interview Space

You don’t have to have a living room or office worthy of primetime television, but you do want to choose your location wisely. Pick an area of your home that is as clutter-free and professional-looking as possible. Make sure to test the lighting ahead of time so that you don’t end up being too backlit or too dark.

Try To Keep The House Quiet

This is easier said than done if you live with other people, especially small children. Hiring managers do understand the struggles we all face being at home together, but try your best to control background noise. If possible, send your family outdoors, on a walk or bike ride or an errand while your interview is happening.

Get Fully Dressed

We’ve all seen memes of people who dress up from the waist up for a Zoom call, thinking no one can see their bottom half when, unfortunately, their shorts were showing the entire time. Put on an entire professional outfit. Not only will this save you potential embarrassment, but it will also get you in the right frame of mind.

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