Why aren’t you getting hired after your Zoom interview?

With the start of the COVID pandemic over a year ago 90% of companies are beginning their recruitment process with a video interview, whether on Skype, Zoom, Google Hangouts or MS Teams. This is great for convenience and saving petrol money (especially with the price of petrol being at a record high) and a lot of people are preferring this method.  Over the past year I have interviewed over 300 candidates on Zoom and most of them fail based purely on our virtual meeting, and it leaves me with the question, why do candidates treat this virtual interview so informally?

Would you arrive at 10am on the dot for your in-person interview booked at 10am? No, you would arrive early, so why is this virtual interview any different? It normally takes about 10 minutes to check connection, login, make sure audio and camera are working. So when you login at 10am for your interview, you are actually arriving late. The interviewer should not have to wait for you to sort your camera out or for you to use sign language to tell them you cant hear them.

Check that your internet connection, audio and camera is working on the day of the interview, as well as the day before. Practice with a friend before the interview, this is especially crucial when you haven’t used the video platform before. If the virtual platform (Zoom, MS Teams etc) allows you to setup a profile, please do so. I would love to interview “Sam Naicker” instead of “Iphone235” and see a face as a profile photo instead of a black box.

If possible, rather use a laptop to conduct your interview, the movement of the phone in your hand is distracting to both parties and comes across as informal and unprofessional. If you only have access to a phone please mount it somewhere stable.

Here are some other don’ts:

  • Please do not conduct an interview in your car, the kitchen, an open office or any other informal environment with noise. Make sure to have a neat and plain background.
  • Don’t look at yourself constantly in the camera or pose, this comes across as vain and insincere.
  • Don’t waffle on, answer questions directly
  • Don’t wear a face mask for your interview



  • Make sure you are properly and formally dressed.
  • For ladies who want to dress fashionably, it is advised to wear more obvious make up and accessories as the camera normally dulls the face and hides smaller accessories.
  • Make sure your face is in the centre of the camera
  • Make eye contact with the camera, we can tell when you are looking away at something else in the room.
  • Speak clearly and slowly
  • Always smile!