Job interviews are a common part of the hiring process and now during the Covid-19 pandemic increasingly more so. The world has experienced a digital takeover, and much of what used to happen in person now takes place online. The process to apply for a job in the fashion industry is no exception: Instead of sitting down face-to-face, applicants and recruiters now meet screen-to-screen. These interviews can take several forms. If you have one coming up, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with all the variables so you can be prepared. In this guide, we’ll walk you through the types of video interviews, what you should wear, and helpful tips on body language and eye contact.
First and foremost, it’s beneficial to find out which video program the recruiter will be using. The applicant should take time to set up the software in advance and make a test call. When testing, applicants should make sure that the camera and microphone are working. Do not to rely on the program’s built in tests, but to make a real test call. If the technology is up and running, it is also less likely to cause uncertainty during the interview.
- You will need an internet connection with bandwidth speed of at least 1 megabits per second.
- A laptop or desktop computer with a webcam. In some cases, a tablet or smartphone may also be an option.
- Headphones with a built-in microphone or headphones and a separate microphone.
- A quiet, private and well-lit place where you won’t be interrupted by other people, pets or noises. Position your webcam so that you have a neutral background that’s free from distractions. Avoid coffee shops and other communal spaces.
If you don’t have these resources already, you may want to consider the following:
- Explore the resources available at the public library in your area. Some libraries have private rooms you can reserve and may be able to loan you the equipment you need.
- Ask friends if you can borrow equipment.
- Rent equipment.
A second important factor to ensure a successful video call is the lighting. The applicant must certify that he or she is clearly visible in the video and is not sitting in the dark. We always recommend using daylight as much as possible, sit near a window. Sitting with your back to daylight can give the impression of having a halo and dazzle your conversation partner.
We’re all in our private rooms now and one thing to consider is what we want to share with others, said . It is important to find a background that looks professional and does not disturb anyone. A bookcase, for example, is a good background, or even a photo wall. You should feel comfortable with the background and testing it beforehand to see if it looks serious and appealing is always an option.
Pretend that you are going to a regular interview. For your video interview, you should dress professionally—the same way you would for an in-person interview. To look your best on camera, avoid bright colors and patterns and opt for softer colors instead. If you are wearing a tie, wear a solid color rather than a patterned one. If you wear glasses, adjust the lighting in the room to reduce glare from the lenses.Position the camera so that you are looking up slightly and centered on the screen. While it’s likely that the interviewer will only see your upper half, it’s still a good idea to wear professional pants or a skirt in case you need to stand up for any reason.
Video interview body language
Eye contact is very important during an in-person interview, and you want to convey that same level of connection during a video interview. Here’s how: Avoid the instinct to look directly at your interviewer on the screen while you’re answering a question. Instead, when you speak, you want to direct your gaze at the webcam. When you do this, your eyes are more likely to align with the interviewer’s eyes on the other end. When you’re listening, you can look back at the screen.
Throughout the interview, keep your mood upbeat and convey optimism with your body language. One way to achieve this is to have good posture. Sit in your chair with your back straight and your shoulders open. Feet can be planted on the floor and arms can rest in your lap or on the desk.
When you’re listening, nod and smile when appropriate to communicate that you’re giving them your full attention. Use hand gestures when it feels appropriate and keep your movements close to your body. Avoid fidgeting or letting your gaze drift away from the device.