The Video Interview Excerpt from Catherine Conlan for Monster: Video interviews can be a great way to connect with a potential employer without having to travel, but they are full of potential pitfalls. So if you’re asked to participate in a video interview, you’ll want to make sure you’re ready. Here are five things you must do to prepare for a video interview. 1. Check your tech Familiarize yourself with your webcam and microphone so you know how they work. “Make sure that your audio and video come through clearly and that there are no technical issues on your end that would hinder your interview,” says Cheryl Palmer, owner of Call to Career. “Also, the camera should be at eye-level so that you are looking directly into the camera,” she explains. “It won’t make a good first impression if you are seen as looking down or looking up when speaking.” 2. Prep your surroundings You may think the only thing the people on the other end of a video interview can see is your face, but they will see some of your surroundings too, Palmer says. “The room that you are in should look neat and attractive and not be visually distracting. You also need to avoid any auditory distractions such as a barking dog or a crying child.” Also be sure to turn off the ringers of all the phones in the area. “Mistakes we’ve seen include video interviews recorded in a coffee shop with a very noisy background or in a bedroom with dirty laundry scattered on the floor,” says Michael Yinger, Aon Hewitt’s global lead for recruitment process outsourcing delivery. “We’ve seen interviewees dressed in a robe and children playing in the vicinity. We’ve also seen a partially clad spouse running behind the person recording the interview.” 3. Look at your lighting Put a light behind your computer so your face is illuminated, Palmer says, and avoid casting shadows on your face. “You should also keep in mind that the lighting can make your face shiny, so make sure that you powder your face lightly (even if you’re a man),” she says. For more, visit Monster.