Virtual Job Interview Tips 2020

Photo by Prateek Katyal from Pexels

Hardly anyone could have anticipated the impact COVID-19 would have on the way we work. Many businesses rushed to move online as the virus swept across the globe. And as COVID-19 continues to spread, college students are entering a bleak job market and laid-off workers are starting their job searches. And just as work has moved online, so too have job interviews. Zoom has become a common app used by businesses and organizations to hold meetings. It’s also a useful tool for conducting job interviews. Luckily, most virtual meeting tools are user-friendly so you should be able to learn the ropes fairly quickly even if you aren’t tech-savvy. If you’re job searching, read on for some virtual job interview tips.


Lighting Matters

Good lighting may not be the first thing on your mind when preparing for an interview. However, as any photographer knows, lighting can drastically change how you look. You will make a better first impression if the hiring team can see you clearly. Test out different spots in your home to find a location with good lighting. If you’re counting on natural light, have a backup plan in case of cloudy weather.

Neutral Backgrounds Work Best

Choose a space with a neutral background, preferably a blank wall. You don’t want your interviewers distracted by lots of decor or personal items in the background.

Choose a Quiet Place

A quiet space is crucial to a successful virtual job interview. If possible, pick a room with a door that you can close to keep out family and pets. If you live alone, you may just need to ensure that you aren’t near any walls or windows that allow in outside noise.


Prior to the interview, practice using the software or app so that you know how it’s features work. You’ll also need to ensure that the audio and video quality is good. Find a friend or family member that is familiar with the technology and practice with them, making sure to use all of the features available. Also practice answering common interview questions as you would with a traditional job interview.

What to Wear

Although your interviewers won’t be able to see most of your outfit, it’s best to dress as if you were going to an in-person interview. This will give you more confidence and show your interviewers that you’re willing to go above and beyond. In addition to wearing professional clothing, you should practice good hygiene and grooming the day of your interview. Shower, shave, brush your hair/teeth and maybe apply a little makeup.

Be Prepared

Before your interview, do some research on the company and the position. Know what the company does, it’s core values, and what they will want from you as a new employee. Have a list of questions ready in addition to some talking points about your work experience, accomplishments and skills. Finally, keep a pen and paper handy for taking notes.

The bottom line on virtual interviews is that you should treat them as you would an in-person interview. Don’t allow being in the comfort of your own home to change your interview behavior. Dress professionally, come prepared and show your enthusiasm for the job.