One of the hardest parts of looking for a job are the intangibles. What will they ask me? What should I say? How do I look? How should I look?
In this work-at-home era when most job interviews have turned to the webcam in lieu of in-person meetings, the networking website LinkedIn would like to help, with video practice tools.
Video interviews have taken on a new life of their own, due to the current situation.
“If we had people come into the office, they’d have to wear a mask, and you wouldn’t be able to see their expressions,” says Tara Houle, a recruiter for Detroit-based United Wholesale Mortgage. “So video is a great tool to meet and get to know the candidate.”
The LinkedIn job tools supply a list of 26 potential questions, everything from “Tell us about yourself” to “Why would you like to work here?” and asks you to record your answers on video. (Go to the Jobs tab of LinkedIn in your profile and click MORE to find the video tools.) Before you get started, LinkedIn also offers video tutorials on each question, with tips from LinkedIn experts on how to answer each question. For the “Why should we hire you?” query, LinkedIn recommends matching your strengths to the position, talking about your accomplishments to show why you’d be a great trick. Then you answer the question yourself, by clicking on the record tab and speaking directly into your webcam. From there, LinkedIn uses Artificial Intelligence to grade the video. Did you speak too fast? How many times did you throw an “umm” into your sentence? Did you utter any sensitive words?
Beyond the AI, (slow down, people!) the tools are a useful for practice sessions. Listen to how you answered the questions. Did you look directly into the webcam camera to make eye contact? Did you speak like the announcer in a 30-second radio ad who has to cram all the fine print in, or naturally? Did your clothing blend into the background, or was it too busy? Speaking of busy, how is your background in the video? If it’s filled with clutter and distraction, that could be a turn off to potential employers, says Blake Barnes, LinkedIn’s head of career and talent solutions.
A background with no distractions works best, to keep the focus on you, he says.
After you’ve recorded the video and studied the LinkedIn responses, Barnes suggests you share the video privately with your network for feedback. “It’s a great way to see how people react,” before the interview, he says.