As everyone is settling into the new normal of working from home, Finatal’s permanent finance team shares their advice to candidates on interviewing remotely.
“All the general interview preparation applies,” says Victoria Harradine, Consultant at Finatal. “You shouldn’t treat it more casually because it’s over a computer rather than in person.” Presentation of your attire and your environment count equally. She suggests checking the lighting and making sure your face can be seen clearly, and not sitting on a swivel chair to avoid unnecessary fidgeting.
And don’t forget the essentials. Thoroughly research the business and the person interviewing you, prepare questions, and know your CV.
“People have a bit more time on their hands, so we’re finding that candidates and clients are able to go into more detail about their skills and the role respectively, to compensate for the lack of face to face,” says Cameron Sondhi, Senior Consultant. Where a client may have previously accepted two references, now they’re asking for three or more. “References are more important than ever to reassure the client they’re hiring someone good,” he says.
“Remote interviewing should be simple, but in reality for some, it isn’t,” says Nick Hague, Director. “Time delays may make it difficult to gauge the interviewer’s response, and many people become self-conscious and more reserved on video.”
He admits that some businesses unaccustomed to video interviewing may be hesitant to make a final offer without a face to face meeting, but highlights the fact that many businesses have done so long before Covid-19. “Getting to second stage interviews can be tough,” says Hague, “but we’re increasingly seeing businesses adjust. Candidates can really help with this too by focusing on what makes them stand out and really impressing on the interviewer their relevant experience, where they can add value, and how keen they are on the opportunity.”
Being flexible is also important, with many businesses offering roles on a temporary to permanent basis or fixed term contract basis, while day rates and salaries for others are being adjusted as businesses tighten on their spend. “Our recommendation in these times is that get in on on interim basis and prove your worth, which often turns into a full time job afterwards,” says Hague.
Some candidates may be holding out to see where the market goes in the two three months, but Sondhi warns that they miss out on crucial conversations that can lead to opportunities later on when the market picks up. “This is the best time to be having those early stage conversations. We are seeing a lot of very strong candidates putting their feelers out there. When more opportunities inevitably arise, they’ll be ones getting the offers.”
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