Job Seeker Blog - Spark Hire
Everything You Need to Know about Live Video Interviews

Everything You Need to Know About Live Video Interviews

Congratulations! You’ve been asked to join a live video interview. This is a big accomplishment, but it’s important to get it right.

You’re used talking to a recruiter over the phone and then meeting for in-person interviews so this live video interview might be a new thing entirely. Or maybe you have done a live video interview before, but only on a video chat service. In either case, you’ll want to arm yourself with all the best advice you can find.

Look no further! The video interviewing experts at Spark Hire want to provide you with everything you need to know about completing a live video interview.

Before we dive in, here are some fast facts about Spark Hire:

  • In business since 2012
  • Thousands of customers, all over the world, both in-house HR teams and staffing firms
  • Millions of interviews completed on the platform

There are many ways organizations use video interviewing, but the main goal is always to get to know you, without the stress of coming into their office, and allowing you to interview in a comfortable space.

The biggest thing to remember with your live video interview is it is an actual interview. Treat it with the same professionalism and care you’d take for an in-person live interview. 

What does that mean? Following these best practices, allowing yourself to put your best foot forward.

Live Video Interview Best Practices

The keys to live video interview success are your preparation, attire, location, and equipment.

Preparation

What you’re asked during a live video interview should not come as a total surprise in the moment. Prepare for the interview by reviewing common interview questions, and practice your responses to those questions. Review the job description, company website, and even the company’s social media page to get a better idea of the company’s culture and values. This information gives you clues to answering your interviewer’s questions in a truthful, and appealing direction.

Attire

Yes, live video interviews allow you to be in a more comfortable environment, but you will be on video with the interviewer. This means you should dress like you would for an in-person interview. For most organizations, this still means you should interview in business professional attire.

Location

You decide where to complete your live video interview, so you must control your surroundings. Look for space that allows you to sit or stand straight, and hold or set your webcam at eye level. Minimize disruptions by choosing a quiet place where people won’t disturb you while you’re interviewing. For your background, try to keep it neutral, like in front of a blank wall. If you live with roommates, make sure they are aware of when and where you’ll complete the live video interview so they don’t interrupt. 

Equipment

Live video interviews require a front-facing camera, consistent internet connection, and, for best results, headphones. Your interviewer needs a way to see you, and does this through a front-facing camera. Front-facing cameras come already installed on most laptops, or you can use an external webcam. The best way to guarantee your internet connection is strong is to hard wire your device to your router through an ethernet cable. If this is not possible, the next best option is to position yourself as close as possible to the router with your wifi-enabled device. 

The reason for headphones is a little less obvious. Live video interviews are conversations between two parties. Your interviewer’s voice will come out through your device’s speakers, and, if your microphone is sensitive enough, could echo through the interview. Eliminate the echo by plugging headphones into your device. Headphones allow you to hear your interviewer without your microphone picking up the sound and relaying them back to your interviewer.

Spark Hire Exclusive: If your live video interview is happening on Spark Hire’s video interviewing platform there’s an additional best practice to keep in mind. We strongly recommend participating in a live interview concierge with our technical support team. In a live concierge, our team guides you through the live video interview set-up by inviting you to a test live interview with them. The team ensure your location and equipment will create a good live video interview experience for you and your interviewer. They will be with you every step of the setup, so you are familiar with it before your interview with the hiring organization.

What happens during a live interview

First, do not worry! Spark Hire’s live video interview experience allows you to set up, test, and even re-test your equipment before connecting within the interview room to your interviewer.

To access your interview, click the colored button within the interview invitation in your email. Your email invitation also includes:

  • Who the interview is with
  • What position the interview is for
  • What day and time the interview will take place
  • A link to this article in the help desk and
  • A link to contact technical support

Once you click the link to access the interview using the colored button, you’ll see a page similar to the landing page of our one-way interview. Feel free to review any of the information on that page, including an “About Us” section provided by the organization, the details of your interview, and an FAQ section. When you’re ready to set up your equipment for your live video interview, click the colored button at the top of the page. That allows you to create or log in to your Spark Hire account. Having an account enables you to securely access your interview dashboard from any device and control the information that the hiring organization has access to.

The platform will guide you through setting up:

  • Granting Spark Hire permissions to access your webcam and microphone
  • Reminding you to use headphones for the best interview experience
  • The webcam and microphone you’ll use for the interview
  • A speed test (you can find the network requirements for a Spark Hire video interview here)

When your equipment, including internet, is set up to your satisfaction, you can enter the interview lobby. The interview lobby is your first opportunity to communicate with the interviewer on the live interview. There, you can greet them, and let them know you’re ready to begin. Once your interviewer is also ready, they’ll start the interview. The interviewer will begin your interview, and connect you to the best server for the live interview. 

Once the connection has been established, you’ll be able to see your interviewer, and they’ll be able to see you. You’ll have a short countdown timer before the interview actually begins recording.

If you happen to run into a challenge during your live video interview, your interviewer can pause the recording, allowing you to adjust your equipment settings before continuing the interview.

One live video interview can take up to 90 minutes, though most organizations on our platform complete their live interviews in about 60 minutes. At the conclusion of the interview, you can click “Leave” to leave the interview and no longer be connected to your interviewer. If you choose, you can then follow up with the organization. Good luck!

Hannah Goldenberg