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Overcoming Change: How to Ace your Virtual Interview

Welcome to a new age of virtual interviewing at Barclays.

With the new challenges businesses are facing as a result of social distancing, we’re having to adapt. As part of our interview process, we usually ask candidates to record video responses, but recently, we’ve decided to take this further. 

We’d like to welcome you to a new age of virtual interviewing at Barclays, where you’ll meet our teams from the comfort of your home. The thought of this might be quite daunting to some, so here’s our advice for acing your video interview.

1. Set yourself up for success 

Setting yourself up with the right equipment will help get you off to a flying start. If possible, use a laptop or computer with a high-quality camera, but if you don’t have access to either, a phone will do. 

Whatever device you use, make sure it’s stable and arranged so you don’t have to hold it – this will ensure you’re free to emote with your hands while you speak. Don’t forget to check your device’s microphone and speaker beforehand too – and you might find that using headphones will help you catch every word. 

2. Practise, practise, practise 

We know it’s hard to practise for an interview, even under normal circumstances, as there will always be questions you might not anticipate. But organising mock interviews with family or friends will help to build your confidence in answering unexpected questions. This is great chance to ensure your equipment is running smoothly too. 

3. Remove all distractions 

The last thing you want when interviewing is to be distracted. Our advice? Find a quiet, private space, and put a sign on the door if you live with others. 

Once you’ve found the perfect space, it’s time to check what will be visible around you. Set up your front-facing camera and have a look – think about what the interviewer will be able to see and consider whether it’s distracting. This would be a great time to remove digital distractions too – make sure you turn off any alarms and switch your phone onto silent. 

4. Consider the frame

Next up, check how you’re positioned within the frame and that your face is well-lit. Ensure you’re at eye-level with the camera and are sat approximately an arm’s length from your device. Top tip: during the day, if you can, face a window that’s letting in natural light. This will minimise shadowing and help you to be seen clearly.   

5. Think about your outfit 

As the weeks go by, many of us are getting used to dressing down, but, like you would with a face-to-face interview, you want to make a good first impression. Dressing for the occasion will not only show the interviewer that you’re committed, it will also help you to feel professional. 

6. Just be yourself 

Interviewing is nerve-racking at the best of times, and we understand that video interviews have an added pressure as you will be able to see yourself on-screen. This may make you feel a little uncomfortable, so take a deep breath, relax and remember to just be yourself. 

Top tip: look into the camera or directly at your interviewer when you’re speaking to take your focus away from your own image. 

7. Preparation is key 

You might be interviewing from your bedroom or your living room, but the interview structure will be the same as if it were taking place in the office. So, make sure you do research before your interview. Look into us as a company, the business function you’re applying to, as well as the role you’re applying for. 

Carefully read the job description and highlight sections where you can mention how your experience and strengths would be relevant for the role – and think about what you could bring to the team and company. 

Ready to get started? 

Finally, remember that your interviewer will most likely be based at home too, and this is probably something new for them as well. Don’t let your nerves get the better of you, speak slowly and take time to think before answering each question – and don’t forget to grab a glass of water before you begin. 

Feeling prepared? Great! We can’t wait to meet you – virtually, of course. 

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