Since the global pandemic hit Malta’s shores in March 2020, businesses across the island have shifted their operations online. From team calls and client meetings to recruitment interviews, the business community has had to adapt to doing things virtually, and fast – but it hasn’t gone without hiccups.

If you’re embarking on a virtual recruitment drive, you’re bound to want a seamless interviewing process – it’ll show your professionalism and make a great impression on candidates, which are bound to have had a few online interviews in the last months.

Make the experience seamless with these 5 tips for conducting a virtual interview.

Be prepared

If you’re new to video calls, the best thing to do is plan and prepare ahead of time. Select the video software you will be using and give it a test run. Remember, even if you’re used to doing video interviews at work, doing them from your home office is different. Test things out beforehand to avoid any technical glitches due to signal strength or otherwise and liaise with any staff involved to create a clear structure for the interview.

Put candidates at ease

Job interviews are nerve-wracking at the best of times, so it helps to go the extra mile to put candidates at ease. Once candidates are informed that the interview will take place online, share the structure with which it will take place, as well as any additional guidance as to how the software works and details of those who will be present. To be extra safe, you can also exchange contact numbers, in case either side runs into any issues.

Set up your space

Just because you’re conducting the interview from home does not mean that your space should look any less professional than the office. Find a quiet, well-lit spot that is clean and free from anything distracting behind you, and ensure that you won’t be interrupted. Put your phone on silent and shut down background programs to make sure there are no awkward pings mid-interview.

Introduce your culture

Holding an interview virtually can make it difficult for candidates to get a feel of your business’ DNA. Since they don’t have the opportunity to visit your office and catch a glimpse of who you are, consider putting a little extra effort in painting a picture of your company culture. Discuss your vision and discover whether it aligns with the candidates’ values, roping in any visual aids that you can share during the interview.

Be professional

The way you dress and behave during a virtual interview should be no different to how you would present yourself face-to-face. Dress professionally and be present. Smile, sustain eye contact and communicate clearly, nodding to acknowledge you’re listening when it’s your candidate’s turn to speak. At the same time, acknowledge that the other party may not have full control of their surroundings, so if a dog barks or a delivery driver rings the door bell, do not penalise them for it – it’s an unusual situation for all, and a little compassion goes a long way towards a healthy working relationship, after all!


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