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2020/05/15 Update

How to prepare for your online job interview in Japan?

Why you should be well-prepared for an online job interview.

In the wake of coronavirus since the beginning of the year 2020, more and more employers said that they have moved from face-to-face job interviews to online to prevent the disease transmission. While online interviews are not that different from the traditional ones, there are a few elements that you should keep in mind to better your chances of success in an interview.

Although online job interviews, basically, do not have significant differences from face-to-face interviews, for example the content of the questions and answers to prepare in advance are the same, it is difficult to convey your facial expressions and gestures and it can also be unexpected and cause you to lose focus on the conversation.

Therefore, here are things that candidates should keep in mind to optimize their chances of success, particularly if they plan to apply for a job in Japan - a country that is notorious for a vast set of strict business manners.

Tips for online job interview

● Communication environment: If you are in a place with an unstable Internet connection, you may experience "muffled voice" or "difficult to hear the other person's voice" or "freezing screen". Check the quality of the internet before you choose a location.

● Ambient noise: Try to avoid a noisy background during the interview because it's hard to concentrate on the conversation for both the interviewers and interviewee. For example, the sound of other people talking, the sound of transportations or music. Try to do it in a quiet private room as much as possible. Also, if possible, turn off your cell phone so that it does not ring during the interview.

● Last minute standby: If it is a phone interview, you should know if you or the recruiter will make the phone call first. If it is a web interview, you should know how many minutes before the interview that you need to log in.
Check everything in advance and get yourself well prepared. Do not leave it to the last minutes.

● Background: If the background is cluttered, it may give a negative impression that you are a person who lacks politeness or is unorganized. Put things away or rearrange them so that they don't show as much as possible in the background.

● Lighting: Shadow created by lighting has a great impact on the first impression. If it's daytime, it's best to do it in a room that receives sunlight and is naturally well-lit. If you are in a windowless room or at night, pay attention to the position and angle of the lights.

● Camera angle: Don’t forget the camera angle. Don’t put it too low or too high because it will affect the look angles of the recruiters too.

● Update app before the interview: If you haven't logged in the interview app for a while, for example Skype, the system may ask you to get it updated and it takes time. Spend time before the interview to check so the interviewers will not have to wait for you.

● Eye direction during the interview: It's okay to write down what you want to say in your notes in preparation for the question and answer session, but don't check your notes too often. Remember to maintain eye contact because the interviewers may assume that you are not listening to their words.

Last but not least, your worst enemy during an online interview may be your own nerves. Take a deep breath before the call, and try to remain calm and collected during the interview.
Good luck!

Source: Recruit Agent