What should I know about virtual interviews?

A virtual interview is a way for employers to shortlist candidates using online tools. It is also called a video or digital interview.

Virtual interviews can be live or recorded in advance. Some of the software used for digital interviews include Skype, GotoMeeting, and SparkHire.

How is a Virtual Interview Different from Other Interviews?

  • Virtual interviews allow candidates and interviewers to virtually meet from different locations and to coordinate their schedules more easily.
  • Virtual interviews are more complex because you need to know how to use equipment such as video interviewing software, webcams and headsets.
  • Unlike phone interviews, virtual interviews allow the interviewer to see your appearance and body language.

What Should I Consider Before Starting a Virtual Interview?

Physical Environment

  • Location. Set up your computer in a quiet, clean area without distractions.
  • Lighting. Make sure the room you plan to use has enough light. You can use desk lamps to light your face. Note that if you have light coming from behind you, it reflects on your computer screen.


  • Video. Test the quality of your computer camera. If the quality is poor, consider getting a better webcam.
  • Audio. Use a headset with a microphone. Headset microphones will improve the quality of your voice.
  • Internet Connection. Test the speed of your Internet connection and close other applications that are using up your internet bandwidth.
  • Video Software. Test the software your interviewer will be using for your digital interview. Download the computer application in advance and become familiar with it.

Virtual First-Impression

  • Outfit. Choose an outfit with a solid colour, such as blue or green. Avoid wearing black or white since they do not look good on video.
  • Body language and posture. Sit up straight and maintain eye contact with the interviewer by looking at the webcam.
  • Interview script. Have all your interview documentation ready: resume, cover letter, portfolio, company research and any other documents you might need. You could have a digital copy of these open on your computer or a printed copy on your desk.

Other Tips

  • Follow the same advice you would use in phone interviews and in-person interviews.
  • Ask someone you trust to do a practice virtual interview with you. This person can help you test your webcam and microphone, and give you feedback about lighting, sound, your appearance on camera and your interview performance.

For More Information

Produced by PrepCan.

Last updated: August 18, 2020 4006259