Being invited to a video interview is now commonplace. Very often they are more convenient for both candidate and recruiter – especially in the early stages of a recruitment process.

So what do you need to do to make a good impression? Here are some of our top tips.

Don’t forget to accept the invite!

As we’ve experienced recently, some candidates leave it literally until the last minute to accept the invite to their video interview. That’s really frustrating for recruiters. It creates a real sense of “will they/won’t they turn up?”. At worst it suggests you are not really that bothered. It also says something about your personal organisation.

Check you have what you need to use the platform

Some video interview platforms require you to download some software before they will work properly. You don’t want to find yourself struggling to install that two minutes before you are due to start. Do a dummy run at least 24 hours before to check you have everything ready to go.

You might find that you need to do an operating system update to make the software work. Or maybe your device is too old to work with it. Or you don’t have enough memory available. All these problems aren’t a two minute fix before you are due to start.

Make sure you are somewhere with good broadband speed

Video requires a good connection. So don’t plan to do your interview from anywhere you aren’t confident has the required connectivity. It will really annoy the interviewer if your opening statement is “I’ve had to turn my camera off because the broadband here is terrible…”. Or the call keeps dropping out.

It’s behind you…

It never ceases to amaze recruiters how little people think about the location they’ve chosen to set up their call. Unmade beds, drying washing, sinks full of dirty dishes. We’ve seen it all. Including flatmates wandering past in various states of dress.

What’s going on behind you can really distract the interviewer. It can also lead to assumptions about how you live your life. Make sure your background is clear or use the blur background filter.

It is still an interview…

Just because you aren’t face-to-face it doesn’t mean you can let the basics slip. Starting with turning up on time for your video interview. There’s no “the train was late” or “I couldn’t find a parking space” excuses on-line. You need to be ready to go on time.

You need to dress appropriately – at least the parts the interviewer can see. You maybe in shorts and flip flops under the table but your visible self needs to look appropriately professional.

Give eye contact – look at the camera not the screen. It can be really distracting if you are looking at a second screen so you are not face on to the camera.

Prepare exactly as you would for any other interview. The questions will be just as challenging. Video interviews are not an alternative friendly chat – you still need to make an impression.

Be armed with some great questions.  The best candidates can sometimes stand out more for the questions they ask than the answers they give.

Follow up

It’s always a great idea to drop the interviewer a quick note after your interview. Thank them for their time, stress how keen you are to progress and, if you forgot to ask something important, you have an opportunity to follow that up.

You can also use the follow up note to add extra evidence to strengthen your case. Maybe that’s a link to an article you’ve written or a case study about a project you’ve worked on. Just adding meat to the bones of anything you think the interviewer might be really interested in.

We hope you find our job search tips useful. You’ll find more on our website. Equally if there’s a career topic you’d like to see us write about then drop us a line at