In our previous videos we covered how to set up (PART 1), prepare, and conduct yourself (PART 2) in a video interview. Now, we’re going to cover some do’s and don’ts of using your smartphone for an interview.
With smartphones streamlining much of our day-to-day lives and apps like FaceTime and Google Hangouts becoming common place; it makes sense that using a smartphone for meetings or interviews would be the next step. But you don’t want to look like a teenager snapchatting with a selfie stick, so the first step: Put the phone down.
It can be very distracting for the people watching if the camera is always shaking or moving around. Set the phone up on a desk. If you have one of these phone holders, they’re super handy, if not there are lots of ways to improvise a stand.
Now you want to get the phone up high, because you want the camera to be at eye level, we cover this and more set up in our part 1 video, so be sure to check that out if you haven’t and download our checklist.
One important thing to note when setting up your phone is the orientation. Most people you’re going to be interviewing with will be on a computer, so you want to make sure your phone is sideways so your image will fill their screen. Now if the person on the other end is also on a phone then you’re going to want to match their screen orientation. It’s a good idea to confirm with them at the beginning of the call to make sure everything looks good.
The next step to consider is sound. Headphones can be a huge help in this department. Most smartphones come with a set of headphones that have a built in microphone and whenever you can, use these over the speakerphone. They provide much better sound quality, cutting down on background noise, reducing echo and helps keep the conversation private on your end.
Now, the beauty of using your smartphone to do an interview is mobility, and for more privacy, what if you need to do an interview in your car? We get this question a lot.
If you have to use your car, just be sure to park somewhere quiet, away from road noise or construction. And try to find shade if possible, a lot of sun can cast harsh shadows in the car. And again find somewhere to prop the phone up. The steering column, or dashboard can work and even sitting in the back seat and using the front headrest is a great in-car solution.
The last thing you should look at before starting a video interview on your phone, is your phone. Make sure it’s got lots of battery life, video calls can really drain the battery, and you do not want your phone to die half way through an interview. So to be safe you can always plug it in for the interview.
Next, put your phone in do not disturb and make sure vibrate is turned off. You don’t need any distractions from emails, Facebook, or Tinder…
Lastly, check your signal strength. Wifi is usually the most reliable and doesn’t use data, but if you’re on 4G or LTE make sure you have a strong signal because there is nothing worse than dropping a call mid-sentence.