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

Although it seems like we are stuck in this new normal, it won’t last forever. Eventually, we will be able to go back to our old ways and life will move on as we know it. Thankfully, we have the tools and resources to continue with most of our everyday lives through our electronic devices and the internet. As someone who is graduating from college this year, I have been planning on interviewing for potential jobs during my final semester. And even though I am stuck at home, I can be prepared for an interview anytime and anywhere.

woman in pink dress working on laptop
Pexels / Moose Photos

So, how do you prepare for an online interview? Here’s what I recommend. 


#1: Do Your Research

Like any job, you want to make sure that you have done your research on the place you want to work. Interviewers want to know why their company stood out to you. As a student-teacher applying to schools, most schools have similar goals and mission statements, but finding surface-level information is not always enough. Dig deep! Figure out what they’re doing to try to succeed more in years to come. Figure out their struggle areas. I guarantee that knowing this information about your potential place of work prior to the interview is going to put you at an advantage!


#2: Dress up!

I don’t care if your interviewer can only see you from the waist up on a video, dress up from head to toe. I’ve heard of many interviewers asking people to stand up while they are being interviewed, so that way they can see who has actually came prepared for the interview. Not only will you look prepared, but you’ll feel prepared. If you’re dressing up for success, odds are that you’ll achieve it. The same thing goes for audio interviews. 


#3: Create a Dedicated Interview Space

Although not all interviews may be over a video conference, it is important that you dedicate a space where these interviews can be conducted. Generally, a quiet space away from other people in your household is key. Additionally, finding a space that is bright and has a simple background is going to get video interviewers to solely focus on you during the interview. It is important to limit your distractions, as having an interview over the phone or on video is not always ideal. Make it as easy for the interviewer as possible. 


#4: Do a Trial Run

If you’ve been told that you’re going to have an interview on Wednesday at 8:30 AM via Zoom, you need to have a trial run first. Ask someone in your household to call you on Zoom. Ask if they can hear you clearly on video, if there are any faces you make or noises in the background that may be distracting, etc. This is also great to determine whether or not your dedicated interview area has decent wifi on your specific device. When I was hosting a Zoom Date with some of my girlfriends from home, I went on my phone and they went on and on about how terrible my connection was. When I went onto my computer, all of those issues went away. Make sure you are trying ALL of your electronic device options during this trial run, too. 


#5: Charge your Devices

This might be common sense, but sometimes these interviews can last fifteen minutes, and other times, they can last a few hours. No matter what, make sure that you have fully charged your device, or that you can remain on the phone with your interviewer(s) while your device is charging. The worst thing would be unintentionally hanging up on an interviewer during a call. 


#6: Come Prepared with Questions

Because this is such a unique time in our lives, come prepared with questions! We are so unaware of when exactly we’ll be returning to normalcy. If you’re planning to get hired by a company, for example, you may want to ask what steps they have moving forward to rebuild part of their business, or even how their company has been impacted by this pandemic. You may ask if they have changed what they are currently creating or doing in their business to adapt to the current pandemic today. If you’re being hired by a school district, it may help to ask what steps that school has taken to work with their students from home or alone in the classroom. Although the future is uncertain, life is full of surprises. Being prepared to know what your company or school district can and is doing during this time is going to help you in the long run. 


Good luck and happy interviewing!

Michaela Molnar

Murray State '20

Michaela is a Senior Elementary Education major at Murray State University. She’s a Sagittarius, Enneagram type 7, the future owner of a pug named Porkchop & her favorite color is yellow. She has aspirations to teach in the city & plans to finish writing her first book by the end of this year. A fun fact about Michaela is that she has sung on stage with Foreigner.