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Payroll Job Online Interview Tips

It is evident that Covid 19’ and lockdown has impacted the recruitment process massively for all organisations. Companies have had to take new precautions and put new measures in place and this is why online interviews are well and truly becoming the ‘new norm’ and it looks like they’re here to stay.

It is clear that some people may think online interviews are informal in comparison to the traditional face – to – face approach and although they are two completely different experiences, this is definitely not the case.

How to present yourself

An interview is ultimately a great way for the interviewee to promote themselves, it’s all about first impressions and evidently, the way you present yourself can be so important. Even though you are not arriving up to a fancy office, you may be sitting in your dining room or kitchen – this doesn’t mean you should turn off your professionalism.

You should present yourself the same way you would if it was a traditional face – to – face interview. It is important to ensure whether the company has a formal dress code (suits and ties etc) or more laid back (plain black shirt etc) – ensure you adapt your attire depending on the company itself.

I would advise against wearing something professional on top without the bottoms to match – this could potentially backfire if you needed to grab a document or adjust the lighting!

Your background

It is important that when you are doing an online interview that you choose to do it in a space where there are no distractions and little to no background noise.

If there are other people at home make sure they are aware of your meeting, it can also be a good idea to blur your background / use a virtual background in case of any unintended interruptions.

Your set up

Before the scheduled time of your interview, you should check your camera and mic are working efficiently. We all know that in traditional face – to – face interviews eye contact is crucial – this applies to online interviews too! Although you are not in the same room as the recruiter, it is important that you remain having eye contact throughout the video call and that your eyes don’t wonder to any distractions that may unexpectedly arise. If you are working off of two screens, make sure the second screen is minimised or turned off so as you don’t get distracted by incoming emails or calls.

Headsets / earphones are also a great investment for video calls as they block out any distractions – you pay more attention to what you hear rather than your surroundings.

Fail to prepare – prepare to fail

Interview preparation is so important. Do your research on the company – know their values, achievements, their culture etc.

Many people like to have answers prepared / rehearsed for certain questions that regularly come up in interviews – and that’s fine! This doesn’t mean during an online interview that you can read your prepared answers off of a sheet – this shows a complete lack of preparation. Again, although the recruiter is not in the same room as you, they can tell if you are reading your answers off of a sheet of paper – your eyes and tone can completely give this away.

Know Your CV

A good CV boosts your chances of getting an initial interview with a recruiter – if you spent a lot of time and effort creating the CV that ‘stands out from the crowd’, make sure you know it like the back of your hand.

It is important that job titles and dates are accurately represented, this ensures that you are giving a truthful representation of your employment background.

LinkedIn is ultimately your online CV – it is so important that your details on LinkedIn match those that are on your CV.

Time Management is key

I’d advice to schedule your online interview for after working hours whenever possible. This is so that you won’t be interrupted by other work responsibilities while on your interview or feel like you have to rush to get back for a certain time.

If your interview is scheduled for half an hour, I would give yourself 45 minutes in case it runs over time – you don’t want it to seem like you are eager to get off of the call!

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