Many jobbing Umbrella Company employees will have some experience of video interviewing, but new research from the specialist tech recruiter Cititec reveals that candidates who are interviewed face-to-face are almost 70% more likely to land a job or contract than those interviewed using video conferencing technology.

Commenting on the finding, Cititec’s MD, Stephen Grant, said: “The global nature of work, cost savings and environmental considerations are all reasons why many companies are adopting this technology, especially in the contract market or for first interviews; in fact, the number of Skype interviews our clients now run is 700% more than four years ago and 50% more than this time last year. It is a technology that is not going anywhere.”

The problem has little to do with demographic factors or skill sets; instead, it boils down a candidate’s Skype technique, Mr Grant explained. The small numbers of people who use Skype regularly in a professional capacity will be far more savvy on how to get the best out of it than those who use it occasionally.

Cititec offers ten tips for candidates preparing for a video interview:

  • Check the Skype connection and equipment beforehand.
  • Close all programmes that can cause interruptions, such as Facebook updates and tweets.
  • Keep the Skype account professional (no humorous usernames or frivolous personal titbits).
  • Dress smartly but conservatively.
  • Ignore any interruptions.
  • Focus on the camera, not on the screen.
  • Choose a distraction-free, neutral setting.
  • Keep a cheat sheet to hand out of camera range.
  • Maintain good posture (avoid slumping).
  • Follow up the interview with a thank-you letter.

Mr Grant concluded by saying that respecting technology and making small changes can put candidates at a significant advantage.

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