Do you have an upcoming interview? Chances are that some, or all, of the interview process will happen via video chat. In fact, 47% of companies report utilizing video interviewing to speed up the hiring process.
While convenience and comfort are two advantages to this digital interview format, some challenges arise. Engaging the interviewer and building rapport can be more difficult through a screen. Since you’re not sitting in front of the person, you’ll need to do your part to make the interview set up as engaging as possible.
How can you do so? Make a positive first impression and place yourself in a positive light (literally) by setting up the correct lighting for your video interview. Read on to discover tips for the best lighting for video interviews.
How to Light a Video Interview
In a video interview, your face matters the most. It should be the focal point and, therefore, it must be well lit and easy to see. You can either use natural lighting or artificial lights to create a professional set up.
How to Light an Interview with Natural Light
When using natural light, ensure you sit opposite a big bright, soft light source, like a window. Do not sit with your back against the window or with the light source next to you; otherwise, your face or a part of it will appear darkened.
Since you are at the mercy of the sun, you should have an alternative lighting source in place in case it gets cloudy. In such cases, you should have a back-up lamp in place, also positioned in front of you or a ring light around your camera that you can turn on easily.
How to Light an Interview with Artificial Light
Sometimes, natural light is not readily available. Not to worry; you can use artificial lighting like lamps or ring lights to create a well-lit interview set up. A lamp placed behind your device can make the difference when the sun is not at its brightest.
You must strike a balance between your distance from the light source and its brightness. If you sit too far from the source, you will appear dark. If you’re too close, the light could appear harsh and reveal too much detail on your face, some of which you do not want to be seen. So experiment with the lighting beforehand to find the ideal balance.
What Quality of Light is Most Flattering for Video Interviews?
While there are different light sources, natural lighting is the most flattering for video interviews. However, artificial lighting for a video interview can also produce flattering results.
Natural lighting is free and abundant. With your device ready, you are all set for the interview. The quality is perfect such that if you position yourself well, you will not have to bother about too much brightness or shadows. Since most interviews will last for under an hour, you may not have to worry about drastic light changes, depending on the time of day.
You can use artificial lighting like fluorescent or LED lights at any time of the day. This is possible because these extra light sources have a strong reflective quality. With artificial lighting, you can create a professional-looking setup that leaves you looking polished and clean. Keep in mind that artificial lighting does come with a cost because you have so many moving parts (power cables, light stands, ring lights, etc.).
Video Interview Lighting Mistakes
The lighting you use in your video will determine how good you look, so it’s important to get it right. Here are some lighting mistakes you should avoid:
- Sitting beside a window with only half of your face well lit.
- Using tungsten (yellow) bulbs that create a golden cast on your face. Always use balanced or white light sources.
- Sitting under overhead lights that cast shadows all over your face.
- Sitting too close to any light source so that your skin appears tinted and way too bright for comfort.
Tips on Enhancing Job Interview Video Lighting
Be Confident On Camera
Beyond your face appearing clearly in video interviews, you need to be confident to prove to recruiters that you are the right candidate.
Whether it is your first job interview or one of many, there’s always room for improvement. InterviewFocus is just the tool to help. With InterviewFoucs, you can work on things that help you appear confident such as your body language, eye contact, word usage and more.
Use Helpful Lighting Tools
While you do not need to spend a lot on lighting gears, purchasing a few tools can be beneficial. For instance, investing in a ring light will enhance your set up for brighter and better-looking video calls.
You can also invest in a laptop stand to bring the camera to your eye level. This does wonders for ensuring eye contact and reducing unflattering angles. With the tools in place, spend time practicing for interview questions that are coming your way.
Have an Intentional Background
When lighting for a video interview, be sure to pay attention to the background. You do not want recruiters drawn away from what you are saying by a messy backdrop. If you can, avoid going up against a wall as this can make you appear flat. Instead, add some depth to the room for natural shooting space. Then, expertly navigate the conversation with some standout interview questions.
Keep Your Recruiter Engaged From Beginning to End
Before you hop onto that interview video call, join a practice interview session through InterviewFocus. The platform offers innovative solutions to your interview struggles so that you can succeed in both virtual and in-person interviews.
Get feedback on your performance and recommendations on how you can improve your interview skills today!