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7 Tips To Help You Navigate The Virtual Job Field, Because We’re All In This Together

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Hofstra chapter.

Just as you may have finally gotten comfortable with the job interview process, everything shifted to a new virtual landscape. Now the competition has increased, the awkwardness of Zoom is making everything a little more uncomfortable and you have to work twice as hard to make a good impression. While I know its seems like a lot, I promise you that these eight tips for navigating the virtual job process will not only help you get the interview, but also the job.


Update your professional presence online

You want to stand out as a job candidate every step of the way. Before you applying, review your LinkedIn and make sure that your bio is up to date, your image is professional and the experiences that you list emphasize the language that is used in the job listings that you are applying to.

Also, utilize the platform to showcase additional skills and experiences that you couldn’t include in your application. This could be your future employer’s second impression of you — your application being the first — which means that you should use it to your advantage to hook them in once more and show off more of what you can bring to the position.  

To take it one step further, consider creating an online portfolio via WordPress, SquareSpace or another website platform. If you have completed assignments and projects that you are proud of, showcase them on your own website. Often, job applications will ask you if you have a website link to include, but if one doesn’t, mention it in your cover letter to allow the employers to see an impressive extension of you.

Do your research!

While you may be familiar with the company as a whole, you will likely be interviewing with a specific department or employee. Before your interview, research their current staff and initiatives like crazy, and anticipate the questions that you might be asked in the interview.

Write all of your talking points in a notebook, as this will reinforce the information that you want to remember in your mind so that all of your internet searches don’t blend together. Review the notes the hour before your interview, and if you feel like you need the extra boost of confidence, you can keep it next to you during the interview.

While you shouldn’t rely on these notes throughout the interview, I find that it makes you feel more prepared for the questions that come your way.

Dress to Impress

While wearing pajama bottoms and slippers may seem OK in virtual interviews, don’t do it! Even though your interviewer may not see more than your head and shoulders, dress as if you are going into an office. Having a full professional outfit on will put you in an entirely different mindset and give you that extra confidence boost.

Cover your face

Use as sticky note to cover your face on the computer screen. We often get caught up obsessing over our appearances during Zoom meetings. This serves as a distraction from the meeting at hand. It may cause you to stumble over words, make strange expressions, or miss what was said because your attention was elsewhere.

If you are constantly adjusting yourself, it may become obvious to the interview that you are distracted, which is not a great impression. Save yourself from the added distraction and cover your face!


Ask questions

This is an interview must, no matter where or how the interview is conducted. Asking questions will reaffirm your interest in the position, and it is a great way for you to learn if this job is exactly what you want.

Prepare a few questions that you have about the position or the company as a whole. Some great questions to ask amidst the pandemic are: “what does a typical day of remote look like for you,” “do you imagine that employees will return to the office anytime in the foreseeable future,” or “what is the virtual office culture like?”

Thank the interviewer

Immediately after your interview, take a few moments to write an email to thank the interviewer for their time and consideration. This is a great way to reiterate who appreciative you are for the opportunity and how excited you are at the prospect of working with the company. This will offer extend a line of communication if the interviewer has any questions for you at a later date.

Follow up

Plan a well-timed follow up email. If your interviewer tells you that they plan to make their decision within the next two weeks, email them close to their deadline to reiterate your interest, and show your gratitude once more. You want to stay on their radar and have good etiquette throughout the process, and this is the final step in making a great impression.

Although you may not have anticipated applying for jobs and internships via Zoom, you will crush it no matter what. Happy interviewing!

Cecilia is a double major in Publishing Studies and Writing Studies Major. Originally from Annapolis, Maryland, she has a small addiction to sweet tea and online shopping. On campus, she is a member of the Hofstra English Society, Working Title, Overbooked, and Her Campus (essentially all the English clubs). She is also a tour guide, a writing center tutor, and an intern at Simon & Schuster.