Skype Interview Protocol for Job Seekers

While searching for a new job, it’s not uncommon to be asked to do a Skype interview. It’s a cheaper and more convenient solution for employers who are interviewing candidates out of state, or simply want to conduct an initial meeting to eliminate local travel. It’s important for job seekers to prepare for a Skype interview just like they would for an in-person interview. Although an interview out of the comfort of your own home seems like it requires less planning, there is still plenty that can go wrong if you aren’t prepared.

If asked to take part in a Skype interview, consider these 10 tips:

  1. Just like your email address while job searching, you want to make sure your Skype username is professional. Catluvr7 isn’t cute in a professional setting.
  2. Do a test Skype meeting with a friend or family member. Some people haven’t used Skype in awhile, or ever, and you don’t want to figure it out for the first time at the time of your interview. Make sure the sound, lighting, and visibility are acceptable on both your end and theirs.
  3. Although there is a Skype app for mobile devices, it’s best to avoid using a cell phone for your interview if possible. It will be hard for the interviewer to focus on why you would be a good fit for the job if your jittery hand is controlling the video quality.
  4. Also avoid coffee shops or libraries if you can. It’s unpredictable and out of your control what noises could happen in the background, which can be distracting to both parties.
  5. Speaking of distractions, is that the mailman? Think about your pets as well. Maybe a friend can take your dog for a couple hours while you interview to avoid uncontrollable interruptions.
  6. Since this will most likely take place at home, check your surroundings in the room that you plan to interview in and take note of what the interviewer will be able to see in the background.
  7. Sure, there won’t be traffic to account for before the interview, but still give yourself time in the morning to wake up and prepare. Pillow marks on your face and a raspy morning voice won’t make a great first impression.
  8. Dress to impress like you would for any interview (including your pants that you don’t think the interviewer will be able to see).
  9. Before the scheduled meeting, confirm who is calling who so there is no awkward delay. It’s also important to have other contact information for the person you are interviewing with in case you lose connection.
  10. It’s hard to keep eye contact during a Skype interview, but remember to look directly at the camera as often as possible.

No matter how your first interview is conducted, it’s your first impression with a company that could potentially hire you. Above are a few tips to prepare for this unique interview scenario, but remember that all other interview preparation tips still apply as well.