Tips to Ace Your Internship Online Interview
An Internship abroad is incredibly exciting yet intimidating experience. Not only will you have to live and work in a complete new environment, more importantly, you will first have to impress a potential employer and score the job offer while not being able to present yourself in person. However, you can still ace your online internship interview with the tips below from us. Keep in mind at any time, preparation is the key to any successful interview.
Now let’s get to what you can do before, during and after the process to best prepare yourself.
Before The Video Interview
1. Determine what electronic device you will be using:
Technology is extremely useful but it can be terribly confusing, for an online interview, place a safe bet by picking an electronic device you are most familiar whether that is a laptop, phone or tablet. Bad audio, images or glitches can be frustrating both for you and your interviewer, and when an unexpected glitch happens, make sure you know the solution for this.
2. Select the Proper Location for the Interview
The ideal space for your interview location is a quiet room with no distractions (and noises), good lighting, and a generic background (not too colorful or messy). For example bedrooms are usually seen as non-professional, you may want to face your camera to a blank wall ideally.
Choose a good device for your interview day. Photo: growingleader.com
3. Test All the Technology
Check if your Internet connection is good enough to conduct a video interview and if the Internet connection at home is slow, find an alternative like a quiet coffee shop with good Wifi service. Check your camera and audio to see if they function and make sure you understand how it all works.
4. Schedule at Least One Mock Interview
Under as close to identical circumstances as possible, schedule an interview with a friend, colleague, or family member. Practice both your interviewing skills, as well as the technology. If you can, record the interview so you can play it back for yourself. If can’t record it, ask for as much feedback as possible — especially for how you look and sound. (Learn more about the benefits of mock interviews.)
5. Do Research on Your Potential Employer
Research is very important, get yourself familiarized with not only the company’s products or services but also their business goals and visions. This is very important because, most of the times, besides your skills and experience, employers also look for your compatibility with their organization. Make sure you are clear too, on your objectives of what you want to gain out of the internship and what you can offer the organization/business during your time there.
6. Prepare Possible Questions and Answers
Make a list of all possible questions your interviewer may ask. There are many online pages that provide you the most common interview questions. You can expect to be asked about your skills, your experiences and how you will fit in the position you are applying for i.e what you think you can contribute to the company. Next, you should have a good look at your resume, because most interviewer will look at your past experiences and activities to give you questions about what you have learnt from the things you did. In case your experiences are completely different from the position you are applying for, be prepared to be asked why is this the case.
After you have all the questions ready, prepare your answers, practice answering them in front of a mirror and correct any mistake you make along the way. Practice does great help to your confidence on the actual day and it allows you to be in control of the situations that can happen during the interview.
Another very important point to keep in mind that many candidates often look past is to prepare some questions for your potential employer – be it how can you achieve personal growth within the organization or how well do you fit in the environment here. Having this prepared shows that you are pro-actively seeking to see if this position at the company is meant for you and it is a good value to have.
Day of the Web/Video Interview
1. Test All Equipments Prior to Interview Time
Do this at least an hour before your interview time.
2. Dress Professionally
Eventhough this is an online interview, your interviewer can still see you. Beside, dressing professionally as opposed to being too casual also helps you get into the mood of an interview. It is best to wear a collared top and simple pants.
3. Turn Off Before Interview Starts.
Turn off anything that can disrupt you during your interview. This includes telephone, alarm, reminders and etc.
Turn off any distractions before the interview. Photo: groupquality.com
4. Make Eye Contact
Eventhough this is an online interview, eye contact is still very important, it gives the interviewer the impression that you are paying attention and focused. Try to look into the Camera, you might be tempted to look at the monitor or yourself, but focus on making eye contact via the camera.
5. Have Notes if You Need Them
Unlike other interview situations, you can have some notes in front of you (off camera) to remind you of critical issues you want to highlight, but do NOT overuse them, or you will look odd on camera.
6. Take a Second
There is usually a delay in connection especially during an overseas call. One way to fix this is that after hearing the question from the other side, nod and wait a second before answering to make sure that you are not speaking over the interviewer.
After the Interview
1. Write a Thank-You Email
Show your appreciation for the company’s time by sending a follow-up email thanking them for the interview opportunity. This should be short and to the point.
2. Follow-Up on Progress
In most cases, the hiring process takes time and you might not hear back from the employer for less than a month. Eventhough you need to be patient, it doesn’t hurt anyone to send a follow-up email to ask how the process is going and express that you look forward to hearing about the result no matter how it will turn out. This shows your commitment and interest in the internship.
If you are still pretty much anxious about the upcoming interview, the best thing you can do is practice, practice, practice because practice makes perfect. The more familiar you get with answering questions, you will get more comfortable in a real situation.
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