How to Prepare for Your Remote Interview

Market Talent logo square AUTHOR

Susie Davids

Content Manager

- January 6th, 2021
Candidate Hub

Are you preparing for a remote job interview and feeling worried it may be trickier to determine whether the opportunity’s right for you? Let’s face it. When interviewing remotely, there’s no chance of visiting the company’s offices, meeting your would-be teammates in the flesh, and getting a feel for the company’s culture as a whole.

That said, it’s more than feasible to ascertain whether the opportunity is fitting for you if you’re interviewing remotely, as we’ll explain in this article. Learn practical techniques, including asking the interviewer appropriate questions, deciphering their body language, and assessing the company’s online presence before the interview.

Is this job really right for me?

There’s always loads to mull over when deciding if a job opportunity is suitable for you, whether you’re interviewing face-to-face or remotely. You can ask yourself the following questions:

  • Does the job role meet your experience and future job aspirations and dreams?
  • Do the company benefits and salary make this a financially-savvy option for you?
  • Is the company a start-up or an established firm?
  • What development and learning opportunities (if any) are there to progress your career?
  • Will the role be based at home or on-site, and will there be a chance for flexible working, such as working from anywhere, if need be?
  • How keen are you on the company’s services and products, and does its purpose entice you?
  • Do you find the company’s culture attractive? And how appreciated, involved, and engaged will you feel?
  • How supportive will your boss and team be in your new role?

While all of the above is critical, at the end of the day, following your intuition is best. That ‘gut feeling’ will sway you when it comes to deciding whether or not the job’s right for you. And naturally, it’s a lot more straightforward for that instinct to take effect when you’re interviewing in person.

Five ways to determine if a job’s right

But, how do you know if a job is truly the right one for you when interviewing from home? Check out our thoughts on this below:

1.    Do some pre-remote-interview research

Interview research

You can unearth a lot about a company by reviewing what language it uses in job adverts. What sort of language does the company use – is it calm, user-friendly, and inclusive? Does the company use the first or second person? Are the language and imagery it uses diverse? Does it point out the job responsibilities succinctly and directly?

Be sure to make sense of job descriptions, as this can help build a clearer picture of the job than you may think. And don’t forget to evaluate the company’s website – it’ll give away more information on its purpose and vision. From here, you’ll be able to see how well these fit with your values – in the same way you would before an in-person interview. Check out its YouTube channel as well, as a lot of companies produce videos to give would-be staff a sneak peek of what it’s like to be a part of it.

Not only this, you can head over to Glassdoor and read company reviews on here, as well as on Google News for any up-to-date reportage. As well as browsing the company’s social media profiles, take a look at current workers on LinkedIn – this may give you an insight into the company culture.

When your hiring manager or recruiter emails over any company documents – whether that’s reports, articles, or other such material – before the remote interview, make sure you read them. By doing this, you’ll gain a glimpse into what the company’s key focuses and values are. For instance, the organisation may have publicised a new pledge to inclusion and diversity.

Alternatively, it may have distributed an account of today’s industry. Usually, you’ll find these pieces of information on a company’s website, so don’t miss out on scrolling through to scrutinise its purpose and vision.

2.    Ascertain the company’s culture when interviewing remotely 

Company culture

Your prospective employer may send you some short footage filmed by staff about their role, experience, and expertise of working at the company or ask you to join them on a virtual office tour.

What’s more, the company may offer you virtual introductory meetings with your potential boss and teammates. Ask your recruiter if these aren’t apparent or available immediately during the interview process. This will give you more of an idea about what it’s like to work there and gain an insight into what the office atmosphere is like, on those projects, with your colleagues – then evaluate whether all of this works for you.

While on your remote job interview, keep an eye out for other company culture giveaways. What can you find out about the interviewer’s environment or background when being interviewed that may suggest it’s a great place to work? Is there anything that can shed some light on what sort of person your would-be manager will be? If they’re office-based, what’s the branding and design like? And if there’s home-based, can you hear or see children, indicating they may be easy-going and flexible?

3.    It’s a two-way process

Remote interviewing

Be sure to ask the interviewer the appropriate questions. And who said interviews are just for the interviewers? Whether they’re carried out remotely or in person, it’s a mutual, shared process. Rather than an interview being an opportunity to find out more about your aptness for a job, it also gives you a chance to ascertain whether the job’s appropriate for you.

So, your questions to the interviewer and the answers they give, particularly during a remote interview, are incredibly valuable when it comes to deciding whether the role is right for you or not.

To give you a better idea of what it would be like to work there, don’t be afraid to ask specific questions about your new position, colleagues, interviewer, organisation, and development and learning prospects.

Some of the questions to ask your interviewer include:

  • “From your point of view, how do you find working here?”
  • “What constitutes success?”
  • “On a typical day, what happens in this job role?”

Another thing to bear in mind during the remote interview is COVID-19-related questions. Think about asking things like, “Is there support when working from home or as part of a hybrid team?” and “What have you learned from the pandemic so far, from a leadership and business perspective?”

Questions such as these will help you ascertain how the company works during the pandemic, their reaction, and whether or not you’d have been happy to be a part of the team during any shifts and changes related to COVID-19.

The interviewer’s answers will enable you to understand whether you’re a good fit for the company. For instance, if the company reveals it’s ‘results-driven’, does this signify you could be punished for missing a target or deadline, or even a mistake?

Here’s a quick interview checklist you can try:

Interview checklist

Download our Virtual Interview Guide Now

4.    Study the interviewer’s body language

Sure, it isn’t as easy to read an interviewer’s body language as easily when interviewing remotely as it is in person. But it isn’t impossible. You’ll be able to see what the interviewer’s posture is like when you’re talking and whether they’re smiling. Do they have their arms open or crossed? Their vocal pitch and gestures can say a lot about how enthusiastic they are about you, as an applicant.

By doing this, you’re checking in on the importance from their viewpoint of what you’re saying. You may have a better understanding of how well your views, personality, and ideas marry up with the interviewer’s, not to mention the company.

Make sure your space is well-lit, and place post-it notes of a smiley face above the camera to remind you to smile throughout your remote job interview.

5.    Interview reflection 

Finally, think about how the remote interview, from beginning to end, was handled. Are you, as the candidate, at the heart of the process? Has feedback and communication been in-depth and speedy? How organised is the company? All of this, coupled with your experience and know-how of the organisation up to the present time, will reveal whether the company’s culture is right for you.

Don’t think that just because your interview is happening remotely, you can’t find everything required to ascertain whether an opportunity is right for you. We hope that by following these five steps, you’ll realise this, too.

Download Our Virtual Interview Guide Today

Contact us

As well as finding you your dream job, at Market Talent, we can give you one-to-one help and advice to help you practice your interviewing techniques. Give us a call on 020 7971 7700 or email us at