Interview Prep Part 3: Mock Interview and the Follow-Up

Career Advice
Man at laptop
Man at laptop
minute read

Ever wish there was a way you could practice all the techniques you’ve learned in our interview prep series? Well, you’re in luck, because we’ll tell you how in this third and final part of the series.

Mock Interviews

You can really hone in your interview skills by conducting mock interviews. They’re a great way to practice answering difficult questions, develop interview strategies, improve communication skills, and bring your stress level down before an actual interview.

While this goes without saying, your personal presence is important. As virtual interviews become the norm, they come with anew list of considerations for you to take into account. Utilizing a mock interview can help you make sure you won't commit a digital faux pas. Take the following into account:

·       What does your background look like? Is it organized and neat? Do you have a weird poster on the wall? Is there anything offensive in the background?

·       How is your lighting?

·       What is the angle of your camera? No one needs a nose shot!

·       Is your technology up-to-date? There is nothing worse than not being prepared and having to download Zoom oran app right before the scheduled interview.

·       Test your system, your speakers, the volume, and the interviewing platform. (Your interviewer will share this with you prior to the call. If they don’t, ask so you can be prepared.)

·       Test your Wi-Fi! If they sent you a Zoom link, they are expecting you to be on camera.  Ensure your Wi-Fi signal is strong so that your image does not “freeze” during the interview.

·       While you are likely only going to be showing your chest up on your webcam, consider dressing for success(completely!). When you look good, you feel good, and you are more confident.

Following Up

The job interview process has dramatically changed through the years. Instead of showing up with a resume, you may be required to provide links to your socials to share your personal brand, participate in a video interview, or even do some sample work to show off your skills. However, one thing has remained consistent through the years—the follow-up.

The best way to follow up after an interview is by sending a thank-you note to your interviewer expressing gratitude for giving you the opportunity to meet with them. The ideal way to do so is via email. Handwritten cards are not off the table, but email has a few advantages that you should consider.

By sending an email, you can do more than just thank your interviewer. You have the opportunity to remind them of your skills and qualifications by including a link to your resume, professional portfolio, or your LinkedIn profile. You may also mention anything you forgot to mention during your interview or didn’t have a chance to discuss. Email is also instant, so chances are you’ll be able to follow up before a hiring decision is made.

When sending your follow-up email, be sure to do it as soon as possible. Include all of your interviewers and remind them of your qualifications; provide links. It’s also important to be brief. Don’t send them a novel; a few paragraphs will do. Your interviewer will also appreciate it if you include your contact information. Adding a subject in your message is also imperative. Include the job title you interviewed for, your name, and “thankyou”. It might look something like this:

Thank You - John Smith - Backend Developer

Don’t be too casual. Don’t stalk your interviewers. And avoid sending an email riddled with grammatical errors.

Keep this in mind: According to a Talent Inc. survey, 68% of hiring managers said that whether or not they receive a thank-you email impacts their decision on candidates.

Update Your Team

It’s important to think of your recruiter as a partner in your career journey. Keep them in the loop. Update them on any and all steps you take. It’s important that your recruiter knows where you are in your journey because they can provide valuable information that may make your life a lot easier.

Summing it All Up

Well, now you know there’s no need to go into an interview cold. You can practice your skills with mock interviews. Take time to create a strategy that you’re comfortable with, and make sure all your ducks are in a row. You don’t want a colossal failure right before your Zoom interview. Check your Wi-Fi, straighten up your background, and make sure you look professional through your webcam!

After your interview, you now know the importance of the follow-up. Send your email right away! Some hiring decisions can be made quicker than you think. Be sure to provide some links and make sure you’ve got a subject line on that email.

If you keep these steps in mind, your interview process is bound to goa lot smoother. Good practice and good communication during and after your interview are key. Try implementing some of these steps, and you’ll be pleasantly surprised by the outcome. Less stress and better interviews are possible. So, go out there and land that job.