Remote interview tips: 6 tactics to ace your job interview

Remote interview tips: 6 tactics to ace your job interview

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Remote interview tips

You submitted a killer application and snagged an interview for an exciting new job. You’re excited to have your first conversation over Zoom, but you may feel a little intimidated about presenting yourself well in a virtual interview. Remote interviews have become the norm, even in situations where the job itself is on-site or hybrid. 

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Remote interview tips

Many employers and hiring managers prefer to conduct first interviews virtually to save time and hassle. If you are applying for fully remote roles, you need to be able to communicate effectively during a remote interview to demonstrate that you can work effectively with your remote team members in the same context.

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Remote interview tips

It’s more important than ever to know how to ace a remote interview.

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1. Do your research on the company and its culture.

One of the most important things you can do before any job interview is to prepare your own background research. Start with the following and zero in on more specific areas of knowledge that will help you answer questions related to the job description: – New terminology in the job description – Background information on the company

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1. Do your research on the company and its culture.

– Brand values, mission, and vision – The competitive landscape Look for the company’s website and make sure you understand what they do and why they feel it’s important work. Find relevant content from their careers page or handbook if it’s public. Make notes for yourself on how well you align with their values and things you think you can add to the team.

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1. Do your research on the company and its culture.

Research your interviewer, the company culture, the founders, and funding rounds. Find out about the investors. Make sure you understand the size of the company. Learn how quickly they are growing These findings can lead to valuable insights that will help you demonstrate the value you can add in the specific context of the organization. The benefit is twofold. 

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1. Do your research on the company and its culture.

Your answers (and the questions you pose) will seem more relevant, demonstrating your understanding. But you’ll also stand out in the process by demonstrating your dedication and foresight. Your interviewer will be able to tell that you’ve put in the time to research.

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2. Present yourself well through your attire and background.

Before your interview, put some thought into your attire and setting. It might feel a bit ridiculous to show up to a Zoom interview from your living room in a suit jacket, but it’s still important to convey professionalism in your interview attire while remote. A button-up shirt can send a message that you mean business. 

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2. Present yourself well through your attire and background.

A top with an interesting print might help to convey your creativity or dynamism. A tidy knit pullover or a nice cotton shirt will demonstrate that you have considered your appearance during a remote interview. Remember that your interviewer is expecting professionalism even though you are not in a physical office.

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2. Present yourself well through your attire and background.

Jobs in more traditional industries like finance or law might require more thoughtful planning. If you’re not sure how far you need to go with your attire, it won’t hurt to ask. Check with your recruitment contact via email before the call. A question like this shows that you are committed with a strong attention to detail.

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2. Present yourself well through your attire and background.

You also shouldn’t neglect your background. A clean background like a wall behind you and good natural light usually works best. Check your surroundings — if they're not quite desirable, you can always use an artificial background to make things easier!

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3. Practice with the tech the interviewer uses.

While many aspects of the interview process are the same whether in-person or virtual, there are some key differences to keep in mind as you prepare. When interviewing over Zoom, you’re not only worried about your responses to the questions but potentially instability when it comes to technology.

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3. Practice with the tech the interviewer uses.

You need to connect on time, you might be worried that your internet bandwidth won’t be enough, and sometimes you may need to use tools that you may not have used before. To combat this, get comfortable with all the tools you’ll need for the interview ahead of time. 

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3. Practice with the tech the interviewer uses.

If you’re concerned about your internet connection, do a trial video call with a friend or family member in the exact room where you will be taking the interview. You can also seek out quiet public places with good Wi-Fi, like a library, cafe, or a hotel lobby.  Remember, there’s still a chance you could run into a problem during the interview.

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3. Practice with the tech the interviewer uses.

But with proper preparation, you’ll feel much more confident and assured in the moment. Take stock, stay calm, and try to triage the problem on the run. If you run into issues, offer to continue with your video off and to save bandwidth. You might even need to try and reconnect.

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3. Practice with the tech the interviewer uses.

No matter what, stay calm and composed — remember, you’ll need to manage these types of instances on a semi-regular basis in a fully remote role anyway. You should be able to reschedule the interview for a different time without too much hassle if the tech just won’t cooperate.

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4. Prepare questions and take notes as you go.

You may be the one being interviewed, but it’s also an opportunity for you to ask questions of the interviewer. Asking the right questions can really demonstrate your interest in the role. The questions candidates ask as a critical window into their analytical skills and their intelligence in relation to the role.

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4. Prepare questions and take notes as you go.

Don’t feel like you can’t take notes, refer to your notes, or jot down other talking points as you go.

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5. Build a rapport with your interviewer.

Although a video interview isn’t a traditional way to introduce yourself, that doesn’t mean you can’t form a connection with the person on the other side of the screen.  It’s important to stay friendly, open, and authentically communicate your interest throughout the conversation. This can make a bigger impression on the hiring manager than many candidates realize.

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5. Build a rapport with your interviewer.

If you’re feeling nervous, remember that’s normal, especially if you’re not used to interviewing remotely. Even if you are, a remote job interview is still an experience very few candidates will have mastered. Default to positivity and assume things are going well, even if you think you’ve made a mistake or said something you weren’t happy with.

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5. Build a rapport with your interviewer.

Allow yourself to have a genuine conversation. Listen, respond, engage with your interviewer, and be yourself. If possible, find a way to build a personal connection. You might want to try to begin the conversation by talking about personal things like where you live, hobbies, or interests, and even ask the interviewer about their day, their weekend, or their remote work journey. 

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6. Have your resume handy.

Just because you’ve got your computer handy doesn’t mean you should skip the hard copy of your resume. Having your eyes dart back and forth between multiple screens could make it look like your attention isn’t totally on the interviewer. Sure, you can explain that your resume is on the other screen, but who’s to say that you don’t have a cat video running?

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6. Have your resume handy.

On a single screen setup, you’ll be clicking back and forth between tabs, and that’s not a good look. And what happens if there are technical difficulties? Or your resume is in the cloud, and the cloud is down that day? A paper backup will come in very handy.

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