Remote Interviews Do’s and Don’ts

Remote interviews can be beneficial; here's how to do it well.

With remote interviews becoming part of the workplace culture, candidates have a variety of choices in job opportunities. However, although remote interviews offer plenty of benefits, it's important to remember they are more intimate and require greater attention. Below are things to avoid and essential things to know when interviewing remotely.


Know your technology

To have a successful virtual interview, it is highly recommended that you become familiar with the platform and app that you will be using. Test your internet connection and ensure the app has been downloaded or updated. Test your lighting as well, natural light is always best, but sometimes you might have to use alternative lighting. By becoming familiar with the software beforehand, you will feel more relaxed during the interview and be able to concentrate solely on the content of the interview.

"I always recommend doing a test before an interview. Video platforms like Zoom, Whereby, Teams, and Google Meet all have their quirks, so the best way to test them is to invite a friend (or even yourself on a different device) to make sure you can successfully join a meeting. Don't just check your connection. Make sure that your camera and microphone work to avoid further stress on call," says recruiter Scott Entwistle.

Have a presentable attire and background

As an in-person interview, you should be thoughtful about what you wear for a remote consultation and stick to business casual or professional attire. You must be fully dressed from head to toe. For a presentable backdrop, stick with a simple area that will not distract the interviewer. Also, you can use virtual background but test your setup first.

Research and practice key questions

You should always do research on a company before an interview, whether in person or virtual. Preparing questions in advance and practicing or jotting down various answers will facilitate a smooth conversation. In addition, doing your homework on the company will make you stand out as a candidate and show that you are sincere about the job.

A virtual interview
A virtual interview


Be unprepared

The last thing you should do is attend an interview without knowing about the organization or the job description because you are wasting everyone's time. Having a copy of your resume or portfolio during the interview is critical. Plan your interview location so you're in a quiet place when you're there.

Arrive late

Virtual meetings have the same courtesy as in-person meetings when it comes to arriving on time. It is a wise idea to arrive 15 minutes before the appointment to give yourself time to troubleshoot any sudden technical issues. You should confirm the time of your interview 24 hours in advance and if you need any log-in information or need to download any apps. Establishing the interviewer's timezone can help navigate when you should be on the call since it is not wise to assume you're in a different time zone than them.

Appear distracted

During any job interview, stay fully engaged with the interviewer. In virtual interviews, it's your job to remove anything distracting you from the discussion. For example, set your phone on "Do Not Disturb" so you won't be distracted by notifications, and also make sure it's on silent. In addition, avoid having a million tabs open on your computer during the interview, as this can cause chaos in real time.