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Interview Tips – How to Ace a Remote Interview

There are few moments in life more nerve-wracking than a job interview. So when you throw in a virtual environment, taking away the face-to-face contact, it can be even more unsettling for candidates. But there can be advantages to this too.

If you have a video or virtual interview coming up, we’ve produced some interview tips and questions to help navigate a structured interview – even if it is on a Zoom call!

It’s all in the preparation

Before you even get to the job interview, you’ll want to be well-prepared.  Do this by drafting a host of interview questions beforehand and doing due diligence by researching the employer. You may want to pull out some statistics or insights you find and have them to hand for your interview.

As always, take the time to research who is interviewing you and prepare as you would for a structured interview. This means all the usual interview manners and etiquette, from dressing smart, to the professional language you use. It should still be treated as professionally as ever.

On the day of the interview

Remote interviews during Covid are here to stay, even just for now, so it’s worth familiarising yourself with the setup.

It goes without saying that you should test your laptop and speakers beforehand, even having a test run with friends in advance can be beneficial. On the day you will want to be somewhere quiet, well-lit and with access to plugs and WiFi. Don’t forget to turn off notifications and emails from your phone and laptop, so that you aren’t disturbed either.

As with a normal interview, be dressed for success, and ensure the environment you’re in is equally as professional (sorry no pub gardens!) and try to breathe through any moments where you feel anxiety creeping in.

Virtual interview tips

One of the best interview tips on Zoom is to use a professional backdrop, or at least a plain backdrop to not detract from your presence. Be sure to mute yourself when you’re not talking and look directly at the camera when you are.

If it’s your first time experiencing an online interview, a virtual interview tip is to be conscious of how you come across, knowing that it’s not quite the same as face-to-face.

Virtual interviews make body language harder to read, so ensure that you display facial gestures and keep eye contact where you can, to come across focused and enthusiastic. It’s important to try and be warm from the get-go. A helpful video interview tip is to treat it as if you were catching up with an old friend, to help ease the nerves.

Questions to expect

You will find that there’s very little difference in a structured interview, whether it’s face-to-face or virtually. This means that you should plan for all the same questions as you would have before, and perhaps a few extra.

Typical interview questions:

  • Talking through your CV to date
  • Talking about yourself and personal interests
  • What attracted you to the company
  • Your strengths/weaknesses
  • Providing examples of overcoming business challenges
  • Examples of failures and success
  • Trends and industry-specific questions
  • What you’re looking for in a job and why you’re leaving your current position

New interview questions to prepare for:

  • How you feel about working remotely
  • Challenges you’ve encountered working remotely in the past year
  • The impact of Covid-19 on your industry
  • How to integrate/make an impact in a new job when you can’t meet your team
  • As with all remote interviews during Covid, you may also be required to sit a test or submit work to accompany an interview, be prepared that this may also be discussed in the interview.

Smart questions to ask

As your interview comes to a natural end, you will be asked if you have any questions for the employer. Now is your opportunity to dazzle them with insight and research you have undertaken, as well as ask any questions that you’re keen to understand.

You may want to research some of their more recent awards or projects and ask them about these, to keep it topical and interesting.


While remote interviews during Covid have become the norm, they can never replace the personal touch of face-to-face meetings. However, virtual interviews aren’t going away, so if you’re in the market for a new job, it’s time to brush up on your online etiquette and ways to ace your interview. These are just some of the interview tips and questions you might want to prepare for, but the best thing you can do is do a test run with a former colleague or friend. As they say, practice makes perfect – even virtually!

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