How to nail your Virtual First interview, according to Dropbox recruiting pros
At Dropbox, the old days of in-office interviews are behind us. Interviewing in a Virtual First world allows you to speak to all of your amazing accomplishments from the comfort of your own home (and whatever sweatpants you’re wearing that day) — but how can you best prepare for this new process? How can you make sure that your interview is one that recruiters will remember?
We’ve got all the tips you need to glide through your interviews with ease. Read on for the best advice from Executive Recruiting Leadership Kim Rawlings, Head of GCO Talent Acquisition Justin McKenna, and Head of People Technology Tavish Ledesma.
How can you prepare for virtual interviews?
- Justin: When doing a virtual interview, it’s very important that you set yourself up for success. Make sure the area or room you’re in is quiet, well-lit, and that you have everything you need at hand. Try to have eye contact insofar as it is possible with the individual you’re speaking with. And always take extra time to make sure you answer the right question! It can be tough to pick up on interpersonal cues over Zoom, so take the time to ask, “have I answered that correctly? Is there anything else you’d like me to add to that?”
- Tavish: The first way you can prepare is by having your list of accomplishments already laid out, and having a concise solid list of talking points speaking to the results and impact of each of those. And secondly, which is something that a lot of candidates surprisingly don’t do, is their research on the company. It doesn’t have to take a lot of time — you can spend a few minutes googling the company, looking at their latest announcements, looking at their product roadmap and asking questions.
What are the elements of a great interview?
- Tavish: I’ve spent over five years in university recruiting and have interviewed thousands of students and candidates for roles. I can go to a career fair and talk to a thousand plus students, and at the end of the day only a small handful of them will stand out to me. The biggest thing that I look for and remember is energy. What energy are you bringing to the conversation? Are you positive? Are you excited? Are you passionate about the role and the company? People want to hire people who are excited and are gonna bring the energy of the team up. So do your best to smile, get excited, and bring all of that positive energy into your interview.
- Kim: The level of engagement that a candidate has with the interview panel is so important. It’s something that is small, but knowing the power of small talk and spending that time and trying to make a true connection with the interviewer goes deeper than your skills on paper.
What are the top mistakes applicants make during the interview process?
- Kim: One thing to be mindful of is to be very careful about rambling. Try to be concise and get to the answer, and then allow the interviewer to guide the conversation and ask questions!
Want more ideas on how you can be a more engaging interviewee, plus other advice from the pros? Check out their application tips video on our Instagram.