Get Ready for Your Skype Interview

SkypeEmployers are increasingly using Skype to interview candidates for internships, jobs and graduate assistantships or fellowships.

If you do not already use Skype, download the software for free and practice using Skype with friends and family.

Then, before your Skype interview, follow the 11 steps below to help you make the most of your interview.

  • Arrange a quiet location to use where you will not be interrupted.
  • Look into the camera to mimic eye contact. You might feel the urge to look at the other person on the screen but avoid this tendency or you could appear to be aloof or too shy.  Some candidates will attach a photo above or just to one side of the camera so they continue to look at the camera.
  • Consider your physical distance from the camera to avoid being too close or too far away. Usually, about two feet away is best.
  • Adjust the angle of the camera so you don’t appear to be looking up and cowering to your potential employer. Likewise, avoid providing viewers with a close up and detailed image of your nostrils.
  • Select a background where you won’t look washed out. White, cream and pale yellow backgrounds tend to make a person look faded. An office setting with a comfortable chair, desk and natural light is ideal. Fluorescent lighting is not recommended because it can be overpowering and contribute to a dull appearance.
  • Check the volume and sound quality in advance. The sound should be turned on and at a level at which you will be able to hear without straining.
  • Dress professionally and do not assume the employer will only see you from the neck up.
  • Keep in mind that a pleasant smile can help you to express your enthusiasm and confidence.
  • Sit up straight and slightly lean forward just as you would for a face-to-face interview.
  • Bring technological problems to the interviewer’s attention so she doesn’t think you are uninterested in the position or you lack enthusiasm. With advanced preparation, you should be able to minimize some risks.
  • Send a thank you letter within 24 hours after the interview even though a Skype interview may feel less formal.

As with any interview, research the organization in advance and be prepared to answer questions about your interest in the role, how you would be a good fit for the organization and position and how you might approach workplace challenges.

Be sure to have three to five questions to ask of the interviewer to demonstrate your interest. Review and update your professional and social networking profiles to make sure they present you in a professional and positive light. Reflect on the process by making some mental notes about what seemed to go well, what did not go well and how you might improve on future Skype interviews.

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2 Responses to Get Ready for Your Skype Interview

  1. Kris says:

    Great heads up for students. I was recently asked to participate in a Skype interview for a firm that was less than 2 miles from my house. While I’d offered to come in person due to the close proximity, they requested the Skype. I believe in part it’s to also test your knowledge of this newer technology and professionalism when not in the typical interview setting. Glad to see SU’s ahead of the curve on this topic!

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