Telephone Interview and Videoconference
In some cases your interview may not even take place in person. A potential employer may choose to interview you by telephone or via videoconference.
An employer may choose one of these methods if you don't live locally. It is much less expensive than flying a job candidate across the country. If you pass through this first interview, you will eventually need to be interviewed in person. If you are offered a job based only on a telephone or videoconferencing interview, don't accept it without first visiting the office in which you will be working. You definitely will want to see the facilities and meet those with whom you'll be working in person before making your decision.
There is a positive side to a telephone interview. It eliminates two sources of worry: what to wear and body language. You do, however, rely on your voice to convey all your emotions, including enthusiasm. Many communications experts advise people to stand up when they are taking part in a telephone interview. It is also a good idea to smile. It will relax you and help make you sound enthusiastic. Although it may seem unnecessary, you should also dress for the interview. That doesn't mean you have to wear your best suit, but you should at least get out of your bathrobe and fuzzy slippers. This will allow you to feel, and therefore speak, more professionally.
If you have young children or a dog that likes to bark, the busy living room may not be the best place to have your phone interview. Get a babysitter and ask your neighbor to take your dog for a walk for a half hour. If you're worried that you'll be interrupted — or if you actually are interrupted — you'll lose your concentration and become nervous. Make sure you have a relatively quiet, calm atmosphere for your phone interview.
Interviewing via Videoconference
In an interview that takes place by videoconference, you will be at a videoconferencing center while your interviewer, or interviewers, are at another location. Once there, you will be facing a camera and talking into a microphone as you answer questions, just as you would on a traditional interview. For someone who isn't used to being on camera — and most people aren't — a videoconference can be a nerve-racking situation.
Body language is very important, so remember to sit up straight, place your hands on your lap, and look directly at the camera. More than for any other type of interview, it is essential that you practice for a videoconference interview. Videotape yourself, or ask a friend to videotape you so you become accustomed to “talking” to the camera.