10 Ways to Prepare for Virtual Interviews 

Andrew Savage

With interviews moving to a virtual format, check out these tips for a navigating a virtual interview: 

  1. Spend some time researching the company on sources like Glassdoor and Handshake to learn more about what to expect from the interview.  

  1. Identify a location in a well-lit room with a neutral background. Several video interfaces like Zoom allow you to choose a virtual background and if you go this direction remember to be professional. UVA has several options you can use to brand that you are from the University of Virginia.  

  1. Choose a quiet space where you will not be disturbed. Try to avoid any potential distractions, have a conversation with those you live with about a social contract for interview times.  

  1. Test your audio quality and consider using discreet earbuds with a microphone for your interview if you are worried about hearing your interview or the interviewer not hearing you. Be sure to test beforehand. Platforms like Zoom allow you to test audio quality so be sure they can hear you clearly.  

  1. Be sure to use a computer that is compatible with the virtual platform you interview is being conducted on. Also, try not to use a device that will accept phone calls or messages during the interview session to avoid potential distractions.   

  1. Dress as you would for a professional in-person interview, top to bottom. You want to make a positive impression and feel at your best for the interview.  

  1. Give yourself plenty of time to join the virtual session. You will probably feel more comfortable being there ahead of time. If you arrive early, treat it as though you arrived early to an in-person interview in which others can still hear and see you.  

  1. Before the interview, make sure to close any computer applications running in the background. This can help with your internet speed. Test your internet access, there are online resources like speedtest.net that you can use for free to check quality. If you do encounter technology challenges, try to have a plan in place beforehand. For example, provide you phone number to the interviewer and have a charger on hand in case of battery issues. 

  1. Pay attention to your body language and positioning. Look directly into the camera to maintain eye contact and position yourself at eye-level so that you don’t appear to be looking up or down at your interviewer.  

  1. Just be yourself! This is uncharted territory for everyone, so be patient and relaxed.  


For more information, the Career for Engineering Career Development has helpful content posted: 



Know that you are not alone! The Career Center will be here for you all, and you can always schedule an appointment through Handshake or by calling 434-924-8900 to talk through more specific details with a career counselor.