Consult Recruitment NZ > Career  > How To Nail A Video Interview

How To Nail A Video Interview

Nailing the traditional interview can be tricky enough, let alone when you add the elements of a video interview – yikes!

Well, I’ve got some good news for you (and some bad news).

The good news: most candidates (your competitors) are terrible at video interviews.

The not-so-good news: it’s likely that you aren’t so flash at them either – but not for long!

At Consult, we prefer face-to-face interviews because we can make a real connection with our candidates, and by coming to our offices they get a feel for who we are and how we work.

But there are certain situations that may require you to take part in a video interview (like if you’re living overseas and job searching before you move home, or you might be trying to move to Auckland from the South Island).

If you do find yourself having to do a video interview, here are some tips to help you nail it:


When you get an invitation to a video interview, it will usually come with instructions about the platform you will be using, and steps to connect.

A word of advice: don’t wait until the last minute to read these! Not all video interviews are done through a simple link – some of them actually require you to download an app!

Give yourself enough time to work out the technical aspect to it all.  Aim to be ready and online 10 minutes prior to your interview starting.


What’s going to be behind you? Before the interview, take the time to decide which room you will use and where you will sit. Set up your computer or webcam (or even your phone) exactly where you will put it for your interview.

Try setting up your device so that a wall is behind you (or even a bookshelf).

A few things that your interviewer doesn’t want to see are your toilet, your messy bedroom, your Harry Potter poster – and they really don’t want to see your dirty dishes.


It’s hard enough to maintain eye contact when you’re looking at someone in person, let alone on a screen and through a camera. Set up the camera to be at your eye level so you aren’t looking up too high or down too low. Remember, it’s the camera that is considered “eye contact,” – not the actual eyes of the person you are speaking to.

Fight the urge to look at your own image (you can check yourself out in those 10 minutes you have to spare before the interview starts). Looking at yourself on the screen is very distracting and your interviewer will be able to tell you aren’t looking at them.

To prevent yourself from looking and sounding too robotic, just quickly glance away from the camera to the interviewers face every 10 seconds or so. It stops you from staring too long (and from coming across as creepy).


When you hear video interview, do you think casual? Well, you shouldn’t! The interview should be taking just as seriously as any other. Fight the urge to wear a blazer with sweatpants just because ‘only you will know.’ The point is exactly that – you will know, and it may throw you off. Being well presented head to toe will work wonders for your confidence and will make you feel more like you’re in a real interview environment.

Test out your interview outfit beforehand. Make sure the colours and finish of what you’ll be wearing are ok under the lighting you’ll be using.  You can pop a lamp above and behind your device to improve your lighting!


It can be a little bit more difficult to manage interruptions being that you aren’t in a regular office setting. Here’s a few tips to help:

  • Turn off device alarms and notifications
  • Put your pets away
  • If you share your house with someone, make sure you tell them you are having an interview and are not to be disturbed. You’ll want to check that their voice won’t carry to the room you’ll be in too
  • If you’re home alone, you might want to put a note on your front door that says “do not disturb,” – just in case someone pops round!

Video interviews are becoming increasingly popular in the hiring scene. The ability to stand out in them requires you to be super-interview-savvy beyond your basic job interview skills. We reckon with these awesome tips, you’ll pass with flying colours.

Ready to show off your super duper interview skills in person? We want to hear from you if you’re an awesome accounting, finance, or banking whizz! Get in touch with the team at Consult today to chat about the next step in your career. You can check out our latest jobs here in the meantime.

About the author

Adam Napper

Senior Talent Advisor

A seasoned professional in the recruitment industry with over 22 years experience, he would know more accountants than most people in NZ.

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