While many businesses still interview in person, many others are switching to alternatives. Following the COVID-19 pandemic and economic shutdown, employers have had to switch up their hiring practices. To keep employees and customers safe, buildings had to be closed, and employers used phone & virtual interviews instead. However, now that the restrictions have been lifted for a while, employers are still utilizing phone & virtual interviews. What replaced the traditional interview, and how should you be prepared for this change?


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Remote interviews are convenient

Many employers are ditching traditional interviews because they are less convenient. Phone and virtual interviews are great for job seekers who don’t have reliable transportation, looking for remote work, or would otherwise need to travel long distances. Phone & virtual interviews also tend to take up less time than in-person interviews, which saves time for everyone involved.


Phone interviews

Phone interviews, especially, are more convenient for job seekers. Appearance plays an important factor in interviews overall, and naturally, talking on the phone cuts that part out entirely. There’s no need to worry about what to wear the night before, or how best to present yourself. Most importantly, phone interviews are about what you say about yourself and your experience. To help you out, you can use a variety of notes and cheat sheets to help you during the interview that you wouldn’t otherwise be able to use.

  • Interview notes. Perhaps you had a previous interview that went south. You can use notes from your past experience to help you ace your next interview.
  • Resume notes. Some parts of your resume might need more explanation. Writing this down will help you better communicate that over the phone.
  • Helpful reminders. Since phone interviews are all about your voice, use helpful reminders to keep yourself on track with your tone and communication weaknesses.


Virtual interviews

Virtual interviews are sometimes used to interview candidates for remote work or those with long distance issues. Virtual interviews are different from phone interviews, naturally, and you should be aware of some key elements when you’re preparing for one.

  • Noise level. While this can also be important for phone interviews, it is critical for webcam interviews. Webcams have different microphones than phone and can pick up and amplify noises from across a room that a phone couldn’t. Ensure that you are in a quiet place with few distractions.
  • Attire. Unlike phone interviews, your appearance still matters with a webcam. Pick out an outfit that is a little nicer than what you would normally wear. It is always better to be over-dressed.
  • Environment. The employer will be able to see the place your webcam is facing. You should make sure to clean up the area to give a good first impression. You don’t need to go overboard, but it’s always a good idea to keep the area presentable. For example, if your interview setup is in a bedroom, pick up, put away dirty clothes and make the bed before turning the camera on.


Now that you’ve learned what replaced the traditional interview, and you’re on your way to succeeding with phone and virtual interviews, how do you prepare for the questions? Take a look at our blog post about the best ways to prepare for interview questions the night before.