Tips for Phone and Video Interviews

Employers often use telephone and video interviews to screen and narrow a pool of applicants just like they would with an in-person interview; therefore, you should adequately prepare for a phone or video interview, even though it may seem like a casual conversation.

Phone Interviews

  • Have a professional voicemail message, should you miss a call from an employer.
  • Choose a quiet interview location that is free from distractions.
  • Disable notifications on your phone to minimize interruptions.
  • Keep your resume and notes nearby.
  • Refrain from reading off a script- it is often noticeable.
  • Smiling helps to produce a pleasant voice.
  • Sit up straight or stand during a phone interview to sound more confident and alert.
  • Speak clearly and directly into the phone.
  • Conduct your interview in a location that has reliable cell service or Wi-Fi.

Live Video Interviews

  • Download Skype, Zoom, or a similar program in advance and choose a professional username.
  • Keep your background uncluttered.
  • Turn your cell phone on silent. Keep pets in a separate room. Ask roommates for privacy.
  • Adjust the camera to ensure the employer can see your professional attire, not just your face.
  • Dress professionally from head to toe - you never know when you may need to stand up.
  • Have a phone readily available in case of technical issues.

Pre-Recorded Video Interviews

  • Practice using a similar platform, like, a resource that is free with your UGA email.
  • Make (virtual) eye contact by looking at the camera. If you’re using a laptop, try elevating the laptop by placing a book underneath it.
  • The interviewer is interested in your personality as well as your answer. Smile, emit confidence, and remain authentic.

Tips for Distance interviewing

  • Research the company, read through the job description, and practice answering interview questions in the same way you would for an in-person interview.
  • Understand that many companies approach these as screening interviews, so don’t worry if it seems brief. Ask about next steps.
  • Be prepared to take notes. It’s okay if your interviewer sees you writing something down. It shows you’re taking the interview seriously.
  • Let your interviewer know if you cannot hear or understand them. There may be an easily resolved connection problem, and it’s better to speak up than to misunderstand them.
  • Call in early. You’ll want to have a few minutes to resolve any problems that may occur.
  • Be concise. Depending on the scenario, you may not be able to pick up on visual cues that you’ve said enough. Keep your answers fairly brief; it is typical to spend 2-3 minutes per question.
  • Keep your attention focused on the interview; do not attempt to multi-task.
  • Consider calling the Career Center at least 24 hours in advance to inquire about using one of our interview rooms for your video interview.