5 Top Tips for Virtual Interviewing for Employers

While the last 12 months has changed the landscape of how we recruit, employ and work, it is certain that we have adapted quickly to ensure the smooth running and growth of our businesses. However, with returning to the office on the horizon, it’s important to reflect on the efficient methods we have incorporated into our recruitment processes, primarily virtually interviewing.

For some employers, virtual interviewing is a familiar process that their companies have been utilizing for years, for others, it is still somewhat unknown territory. Technical difficulties can be all-too-common, not to mention behavioral cues can be harder to read a la video. Whether you’re a novice or a veteran of online interviewing, there are a few tips that can help improve your virtual interviews, to ensure top efficiency and reduce the hiring timeline.

1.Budget time effectively

Consider setting hard cut offs for meetings, reaching 45/50 minutes max instead of a hour, to give you and the interview panel effective time to collate notes and scoring for the candidate. Equally, organizing to meet with your fellow interviewers prior to the interview, even for just 10 minutes, to ensure everybody is on the same page can save time and make sure that all questions have been asked and all areas have been covered.


2.Put your candidates at ease by sharing expectations, timelines, names of interviewers

Overcommunication is key during interviews, they can be highly stressful for individuals and therefore difficult for them to remember certain pieces of information. When confirming the interview via email, make sure to include;

    • Interviewers names & roles within the company
    • Estimated duration of the interview
    • General overview of expectations of the interview, to allow them to prepare effectively
    • Tips on how to access the videoconferencing technology and whether they need to download any software or if they can simply click a link
    • A backup contact number, in case of technical difficulties


3.Make sure there are no distractions

It may go without saying, but making sure that your environment is free from distraction for both you and the candidate is really important.  Make sure your phone is on silent, turn off sound alerts for email notifications and resist the temptation to check emails or respond to a quick instant-message. Making sure your camera is on, you can see your face clearly and hear you will shows the candidate that your organization and you as a potential manager are taking the process seriously and professionally.



Just as you would for an in-person interview, review the CV effectively prior to the interview and jot down areas you would like the candidate to expand and explain further, including extra questions. This will save a lot of time during the interview. Technological preparation is important too, test your connection and close down unnecessary tabs or windows on your desktop.

It is also important to have a company culture pitch prepared for an interview. Candidates won’t be able to get to walk into your office space and get a glimpse at the company culture or feel the atmosphere. To compensate, make sure to spend a little extra time to paint a picture to the candidate of what the company is like, focusing on the company’s goals, culture and strategic plans

why is it a good time to join your company? What opportunities are there down the road? Mention elements around the sports and social, and general comradery of staff.

5.Body Language and Virtual Engagement

Body language is hard to consider virtually, but it is important to engage with during your interview. This includes eye-contact, looking at the candidate, and not looking around the room or at emails, it is obvious and the candidates will be able to tell if your eyes are moving around the screen. Try keep a pleasant look on your face, creating a positive experience for the candidate and make them feel relaxed, smile and nod when appropriate to make the candidate feel they are being listened to.

Equally, pay attention to the candidates body language and engagement, take notes — not only about what the candidate says and how they behave but about the process. Jot down reminders about what is working and what is not.


BioPharma Engineering have adopted these interview techniques and more  , ensuring the right hire regardless of face to face or virtual meetings. 

For more tips and insight into our client service offering contact Kate at kmoriarty@biopharma.ie

Kate Moriarty is our resident Senior Recruitment Consultant and supports both BioPharma Engineering’s internal recruitment and our client service offering. We offer tailored talent acquisition service solutions for our Blue Chip Pharmaceutical clients for permanent and contract positions across Engineering and Quality.