Five Tips to Ace Your First Virtual or Zoom Interview

 

As we are all practicing social distancing due to COVID-19, job interviews and our point of contact with one another has changed; it’s a new and changing world out there!

Recruiters, interviewers and hiring managers are now using online platforms to connect with people they are meeting with for the first time.  First interviews or virtual interviews are often online with platforms such as on Zoom, Facetime, Microsoft Teams as well and other virtual sites.

 

 

Here are a few tips to be successful in your next remote interview:

  1. Dress professionally. Although you are at home dress as you would for an interview.  Dress from the shoes up – be prepared to close a door, window or get up from your desk.   Make sure the area you are sitting in is neat and tidy.  If the camera drops or you have to get up form your desk you want to be fully dressed and prepared.
  2. Have eye contact with the camera. Be eye level with the camera so that the person you are talking with is not looking up or down at you.
  3. Situate yourself at a desk or table without interruptions. A loud TV, barking dog or person talking in the back  ground is a distraction and will set off the interviewer.  A bright room with lighting and a neutral background is great.  Turn off your phone and email so that you are not distracted during this meeting.
  4. Be Prepared. Do your research on the company, review the website, review the job description as well as have a copy of your resume printed to refer to.  Don’t forget to have your laptop charged or plugged in.  Have a cheat sheet prepared with your strengths, weaknesses, and questions for your interviewer.
  5. Practice with a mock virtual interview. Job interviews are nerve racking so familiarize yourself with zoom or the platform you will be using.  Become an expert.  Contact a friend over family member using the method so that you know how to turn your mike on, adjust volume or lighting to see your interviewer.  Be aware of the text chat, video recording, muting if a n emergency arises as well as screen sharing.

Most important to do list item in our opinion? Smile and have fun.  You’ve got this!

 

 

If you have any questions, please feel free to email our team for advice or suggestions.

Looking for a Job after Graduation – a few ideas to get started

Starting a job search after graduation, especially during COVID is new for all of us.   Breaking into your new profession or finding that dream job takes patience and determination.  Here are a few ideas to get started:

Identify Your Strengths & Highlight

It is important that you quantify or highlight achievements on your resume as you start to apply for jobs. When starting a new career, you might have limited or no experience, that is ok and should be expected from hiring mangers.

In this case, identify your transferable skills such as customer service, attention to detail, accuracy, relationship building, follow up, sales etc.  These are “soft skills” but hold a lot of value for a lot of different types of positions and industries.

Other items to highlight are volunteer work, school or sport leadership roles, research or internships.

Update Your LinkedIn Profile

Update your resume on LinkedIn, make sure it’s up to date, and let your network know that you are “seeking opportunities”. You may have a contact refer a new job opportunity to you, that you that you would not have otherwise been aware of.

Also, did you know recruiters and hiring managers can see your profile and that you are listed as looking for work? This will give them added incentive to contact you.

Create a list of companies you would like to work for

A lot of jobs are found through referrals or networking. Don’t be shy to tell friends or colleagues that you are seeking a career opportunity. Visit job boards, websites and industry associations.  Dig deep into industries that you are interested in working in, and call companies to set up information meetings to learn about jobs. The more proactive you are, the more seen you become. It is much easier to think of you for a job opportunity if they have your information on file already. Even easier if you’ve already met!

Stay Focused

Start well before graduation when thinking about jobs, but don’t get discouraged if you missed certain events or opportunities. Keep yourself motivated, on track and focused while being patient and open-minded. This might mean that you try to schedule a meet and great on your own instead of having attended a job fair. Maybe this means you call and hiring manager to simply introduce yourself and learn about what they might be looking for in the future. The goal is to stay top of mind for companies, because they could have a need at any moment.

Stay Positive

Keep a positive mindset through the job search and interview process, and do your best to no become discouraged. Stay positive during this time and take care of your mental, emotional and physical health. These all count towards the confidence you will exude during the hiring process. We know, as recruiters, that it can be daunting to go through the different parts of the process, so know that you are not alone.

Please feel free to contact us with any questions or for assistance hiring@careercontacts.ca

The HR Insider, how to land your dream job, and keep it is also a great resources for all stages of the job search process!

We wish you so much success!

5 Industries That Are Still Hiring

We know the job market has taken a steep dive in the last few months.
In BC, according to our PM, Justin Trudeau, they “received over 500,000 applications compared to just under 27,000 applications for the same week last year,”  in reference to employment insurance.

Instead of focusing on the downward job market, we wanted to take a moment to highlight a few industries that we are currently working within that are still hiring. Everyone knows that tech companies (for the most part) have adapted well, or did not need to adapt much at all. Many still continue to be hiring. While we are working with many tech firms, here are some industries that you may not have considered, that are doing some really meaningful work!

If you are looking for work, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at Career Contacts for more information.

Read more

What to wear to a remote job interview

When going to a job interview, first impressions really count.  Now that a lot of interviews are going remote, many are forgetting that you are still about to make a first impression, and your appearance counts.

Dress with confidence and style; be polished and professional.

Here are some tips for you:

Find out what the dress code is

Ask what the dress code is when setting up the job interview.  This will give you a hint on what they are expecting, and also give you a glimpse of their culture too!

Be conservative with what you choose

If the job interview is at a formal office, dress the way you would on your first day, unless told otherwise. If it is a casual office, and jeans and t-shirts are worn, you should still do a more business variation of this to look put together and like you put in effort for the interview.

Wear clothes that fit

Don’t wear clothes that are too tight or too loose to the job interview. Both are inappropriate and will make you look less put together.

Wear clean clothes

Even over zoom, we can tell when your clothes are dirty, and it gives off the wrong first impression.

Be well groomed

The COVID restrictions have made it challenging for everyone to feel comfortable getting hair cuts, and heading to salons for regular appointments. This is not an excuse to show up to interviews a mess. Simply putting some effort into keeping your hair out of our face, and clean, will go a long way. Remember that your hands are often seen in the camera, so while you may not be getting your nails done, they could still be clean.

Dress for the job you want, not the job you have

You’ve likely heard this saying before. It’s important that you let go of your preconceived notions of the work that you are doing now, and focus on where you are looking to be in the future. Dress for the job you are applying for.

Feel comfortable adding your own personal style

Add a splash of colour or personality like a tie, scarf, or piece of jewelry. It’s OK to have personality. You want to be memorable and stand out from the other candidates and adding a little statement can help with that.  At the end of the day, you want them to hire you; the real you. So feel comfortable sharing a bit about who you are; we just recommend you don’t go overboard.

 

At the end of the day, remote interviews feel very similar to in person interviews, when you get going. The main thing is to feel confident, prepared and ready to what them with how well you align with the position they are hiring for.

Want to know more about about how to succeed in job interviews, check out these additional tips.

Good luck at your job interview!

Guest Blog: The New Customer Relationship

At Career Contacts, we are firm believers in #collaborationovercompetition and we have built our company on that premise. 

We are excited to feature Azzra Bardai, a customer success expert, who can provide some insight and tips for our growing list of clients on how to adapt and form the new customer relationship!

The current global health and economic pandemic has forced us to transform in a very short period of time. Conversations are shifting  to developing a return to work strategy focused on the path to recovery, but we must also continue to focus on our customer relationships. The shifts in social and business behaviours will impact all of us and the importance of building relationships with our customers is top priority. 

Customers are at the forefront of what we do, customers expectations were already on the rise pre-COVID and will continue to shift. Corporate social responsibility is driving a new standard for how we work with our customers and the value we deliver to our customers will need to be maximized.

Deepen your existing customer relationships and foster new ones

Now is the time to move away from the standard customer relationship and create a new standard. The new standard are relationships that span outside of business, where there is a true sense of authenticity, empathy and understanding of customers. The ultimate result, customers that give you reviews and referrals without you asking. 

Check in

Pick up the phone, send a text message or connect via social media (do you know what works best for your customers?), not just when you have an ask. Reach out with no business agenda but instead just to check in. Create the opportunity to gain an understanding as to how your customers have been affected by the pandemic in life and business. 

Think about the long term future 

The past few months have forced us to think about the short term future. How do we help our customers now but as we begin to shift back to think about their long term future, what have you considered for your customers? The continuation of postponing monthly recurring payments will still be in play. Be ahead of the curve and work with your finance department to determine what you can offer. 

Author: Azzra Bardai, Customer Success Expert

Experienced and results driven, Azzra acts as an advisor to customers throughout the onboarding cycle, driving value through effective engagement of platforms, and managing resolution of any technical issues. She prides herself on developing relationships with customers, keeping the best interests of stakeholders in mind, and acting as an internal advocate.

 

How are you creating value for your customers? You may have already implemented one or all of these best practices, but if you haven’t now more than ever is the time to be thinking about how to structure your organization to be customer-centric.

Want to get some more information on how to ensure customer success in your organization?
Feel free to reach out to us and we are happy to make some connections!

hiring@careercontacts.ca | 604-606-1831

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