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Interviewing Online – The Do’s and Don’ts

23 Apr 2021

 Amongst other things that have emerged on the back of the pandemic – the move to online interviews is something that has grown exponentially. It is important to remember that candidates and clients alike should approach an online interview as they approach a face-to-face interview. Neither party should turn blame an online interview as the reason for not hiring or progressing in a process. Just as we look to impress in a face-to-face interview we must look to impress online. By removing all excuses from the equation, both parties will be able to focus on the interview itself.

With that it is important to note that when preparing for a Teams/Zoom/Google Hangouts interview it is critical you are prepared for the format and etiquette of a video interview.

Adhering to the following checklist will ensure you are position to put your best foot forward at interview.

 1. Check your internet connection and speed

  • Your internet connection may seem fine for day to day browsing but loading a video requires increased capacity.
  • Check your internet speed and if it is slow try plugging into the LAN or moving closer to the WiFi box.

 2. Does Teams, Zoom or Google Hangouts work on your device?

  • The safest way to ensure there are no issues is to conduct a test meeting prior to your interview – this can be done with your recruiter, a family member, or a friend.

 3. Headphones/speakers and microphone working?

  • Make sure your headphones/speakers and microphone are working correctly and that any device requiring batteries are charged, and the sound is clear.
  • Find a quiet place where you will have no interruptions.
  • Test-run the above prior to interview.

 4. Lighting and Positioning

  • Try to let natural light into the room, but don’t let all that light hit your back. It is recommended to have your largest light source either right in front of you or no more than 45 degrees from directly in front of you.
  • Ensure your camera is positioned head-on and at eye level (place your laptop on some books if necessary).
  • Test-run the above prior to interview.
  • Try to stay in a consistent spot for the duration of the call – try not to slouch or slide back excessively.

 5. Attire – what not to wear.

“Being overdressed is better than being underdressed” Tom Ford.

  • Generally, keep it as you would for a formal interview in person and you cannot go far wrong. However, ties would be classed as optional and are not commonly worn.
  • If unsure, ask your recruiter for their advice as often company culture will dictate the most suitable attire.

 6. Time

  • Be at least 5 mins early. There is no commute to the interview, you have no excuse for being late!


Whilst looking to approach online similar to a face-to-face there are a few extra variables in the equation. To ensure the interview goes off as seamlessly as possible it is imperative that candidates run through the checklist outlined above before any interview. Ultimately you want to put your best foot forward for any opportunity – the attention to detail for an online interview is a crucial component of this.

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