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Pre-recorded video interview

How to prepare for a pre-recorded video interview - tips for candidates

eye 9140 Published on 02 Sep. 2021
tag #HR advice

Have you recently applied for a job and received an invitation to take a video interview? Don’t stress out! Pre-recorded interviews have become increasingly popular amongst recruiters. Even if you don’t have a standing invite to take a pre-recorded job interview for a position you’ve applied for, there are very high chances that at a certain point in your professional career, you will have to face a pre-recorded interview. Let us break the pre-recorded interviews down for you, and we’ll provide you with some tips to do amazingly well in a pre-recorded interview and impress your interviewer! 

What is a pre-recorded video interview? 

Pre-recorded video interview is an online job interview where the recruiter has already set audio, video and text based questions for all candidates to answer in the comfort of their own homes. You don’t speak directly to the recruiter, but record your answers for the interviewer to review later. Pre-recorded interviews give you a chance to shine and show the recruiter how you are unique, different and fit for the position you applied to better than anyone else! These types of interviews have become increasingly popular and it allows you a safe, comfortable interviewing experience. Pre-recorded interviews will become your new favourite type of interview.

Preparing for a pre-recorded interview 

The pre-recorded interview should be the best representation of yourself you can put together. The first thing to remember is to be authentically yourself, because that’s what will make you stand out from the other candidates. You need to gather as much information as you can on the company, their history and what their values are. Check their own webpage, as well as their social media and potentially even some of the employees’ LinkedIn profiles. You can gather a lot of information regarding the company culture from all these and to better know if it would be a great fit for you. Always be prepared to receive one or two questions concerning the company itself, so be sure to do your homework and research so you’ll be ready to impress while taking the pre-recorded interview! 

The next step after having the right look and dressing professionally is to ensure that your background is clean, organized and there’s nothing potentially distracting behind you in the spot you will record your interview in. Aim for neutral colours and avoid a messy background. It gives the interviewer the impression that you yourself are clean, well organized and have a high attention to detail.

Hone in on your best qualities

Your next step is preparing the content about yourself for the interview. Preparation is key and you need to do your homework on yourself. 

To do this, you write down a list of your best qualities, capabilities and other attributes that make you a unique candidate and fitting for the position you’re interviewing for. Ask yourself why exactly you want to work for the company and what are your deeper motivations? Avoid trying to find the “best” generic answers and repeating sentences like “I’m motivated and dynamic” because most people are. Figure out what is unique about you. 

Find a connection between the company and its purpose and what you value most in life. Don’t be afraid to show off your best skills, like creativity or leading a team, even if it isn’t directly linked to your past work experience. It can be an asset in your new one. The interviewer is looking for the best fit to the position, but they’re also trying to find the candidate with the most potential for learning and growing while in the position. 

Practice your presentation skills 

After having a clear vision of what skills and qualities you can bring to the organisation, it’s vital that you take the time to practice how you present yourself. You can make a trial interview while filming on your computer or your phone in order to have practice and see how you come across. Answer 3-4 questions you often hear in interviews, and make sure a “tell me about yourself” question is one of them! You always need to be prepared for that question in particular. 

After finishing your trial interview questions, watch the footage. Are you speaking clearly, or too hastily, or too slowly? If there’s any problem with the sound quality and you had a trial run with the laptop, check the microphone and ensure you can sound as clear as possible. Is your posture looking natural or a bit too rigid? Do you think you come across as yourself? The goal is to be natural, and use gestures and eye contact with the camera as if you were speaking to the interviewer in person. 

When you get around to logging onto the pre-recorded interview platform, they usually have a “waiting room” before clicking “start interview” where you’re able to check the camera and the sound. You can angle the camera well; not too low where all of your head isn’t visible, but not too high as it won’t look natural. Aim for a neutral angle that will capture your head as well as shoulders into the shot. Ensure your internet connection is as good as it can be, and that there will be no distractions during the interview. Silence your phone and ensure a quiet environment, free of pets, housemates or children. 

Treat the interview as if it was in-person, so remember to look into the camera and smile while you speak. Check all instructions and read everything carefully, respect the given deadlines and keep your tone and words polite. 

In case of any technical problems or errors, do contact the interviewer immediately to inform them of the problem and to not let it affect your application. After finishing the interview, always send the recruiter a thank you email. It’s a small act that can speak volumes about your character and passion for the open position.

Remember this

Knowing that there are going to be only a handful of questions, as the interview is a set time, and cannot extend further than the time limit, your answers need to be direct and to the point. Each question has been designed specifically for measuring how you match the position, your desire and motivation towards the specific company, your soft skills and even your potential for learning. Prepare yourself well in advance, and you can convey all your best skills to the interviewer. Always remember to smile even before you click on “start interview”!

Lyydia Kilkki

Community Manager

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