Student/Alumni Virtual Help Desk:
(MWF: 11am – 6pm ET | TuTh: 10am – 4pm ET)

Employer Virtual Help Desk:
(MW: 8am – 10am, 12pm – 2pm | TuTh: 11am – 1pm & 5pm – 7pm ET)

Virtual Interview Tips

The Office of Career Exploration and Success (CES) at Rutgers–New Brunswick views the health and safety of our students and employer partners as a top priority. All recruiting services and programming will be offered virtually in the fall semester. Services include the interviewing program, employer information sessions, and a new series of four virtual career fairs segmented by the types of recruiting opportunities and functions of each role.

InterviewStream allows you to rehearse interview questions online and further develop strong interview skills.  You can select from thousands of sample interview questions and review your performance online individually, or with a Career Advisor. This system is open to Rutgers University-New Brunswick students and alumni.

Below are some tips for virtual meetings and interviews.

 
 

Tips for Video Meetings

Attire

  • Dress either professionally or business casual and avoid bright colors

Environment

  • Find a quiet, private, well-lit place, free from possible interruptions
  • Always be mindful of the space you are in and what decor is behind you
  • Get rid of any distractions

Etiquette

  • Keep a good body posture
  • Ensure your computer or device is at the eye level and you are not looking up or down at the screen
  • Always address the interviewer by their correct name or titles
  • When listening, nod and smile to show you are engaged
  • Use hand gestures when appropriate
  • Place your phone in silent mode
  • Try to get online at least five minutes before the meeting

Tools

  • Have a pen, notepad, and copy of your resume and cover letter on your desk
  • Have all the required materials for the meeting close to you
  • Have a stable internet connection and practice using the software before the meeting
  • Charge your device before the meeting and keep it plugged in during the meeting
 

Tips for Phone Meetings

Etiquette

  • Speak boldly
  • Use the person's title (Mr. or Ms. and their last name) - only use their first name if they ask you to
  • Smile, focus, listen and enunciate during the conversation
  • Avoid non-upright positions when speaking as it becomes evident in your voice

Tools

  • Keep a glass of water nearby in case you get a dry throat or cough during the conversation

Environment

  • Use a quiet and private area free from noise and other distractions
 

CES Staff Virtual Advice

As communications with our office and many others are shifting to online platforms, we want to help students have the best virtual experience possible.
Below are tips from our staff to prepare you for video and phone meetings.

 
Barbara Thomson

Set up your meeting notes in a picture stand/frame slightly behind your laptop to prevent you from looking down at your notes.

 
Robyn Ginese

It's challenging to express warmth, energy, and interest without being in person. Make an intentional effort to smile, make eye contact, and exude enthusiasm for the role, even though you will not necessarily feel a reciprocated response back. 

 
Lisa Goddard

Make sure everyone in the household knows when you will be doing your interview, so there are no unexpected interruptions.

 
Kait Weiss

The camera loves rich jewel tones like sapphire blue, emerald green, ruby red, amethyst purple, and turquoise. These colors pop on camera and generally look great on everyone. Also, stay away from any intricate patterns or stripes because the camera will make it look like lines are moving all around your outfit.

 
Toi Tyson

If unexpected background noise occurs (e.g., neighbor's dog barking), be "present" (without interrupting) by acknowledging rather than ignoring it. Also, don’t forget to write a thank you follow-up within 24 hours.

 
Catarina Caulfield

Try to connect personally with the person on the other side of the interview table, webcam, or phone. The resume is what got you the interview; your ability to connect is what will get you the job.

 
Janet Jones

Warm-up with a few FaceTime calls with others before the interview and have a prepared list of ten things you want to make sure you convey to the recruiter during the meeting.

 
Becca Baier

It is essential to slow down your speech during phone and video interviews. Talking too fast can result in sound distortion. Also, wait for the interviewer to finish talking altogether, to help ensure you don't talk over one another. 

 
Larissa Keller

Be aware of your lighting during a video interview. Avoid sitting with your back to a window or lamp, which can cause you to appear in silhouette. Instead, try to angle yourself so that the daylight illuminates your face from a window or a well-placed lamp. Also, be mindful of any distracting visuals in the background.

 
Sharon Fash

If something should go wrong with your connection, have an alternate way to communicate readily available and prepared. 

 
Barbara Zito

Test the setup/angle of your camera on your laptop/desktop. You want to have your head and eyes in a neutral position so that you are not looking down, off to the side, etc. This may involve opening up your laptop at the right angle or putting a sticky note on your desktop as a reminder of where to focus your eyes. 

 
William Jones

If it is a phone interview, you should try to find a photo of the person that will be interviewing you in front of you to help with your interactions
while on the call.

 
Larry Jacobs

Put warmth into your voice, sound energetic and enthusiastic, and get online 15 minutes early to test your equipment and make any necessary adjustments.

 
Scott Borden

Take another look at the job description for which you are interviewing. This can trigger you to stay on point in the interview, and highlight transferable skills and experiences that relate to the role.

 

 

 

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