About the author

Darren Cronian, the author of this guide, has spent eight years securing remote jobs and building a successful freelancing business. His goal is to help people escape the office. Read more >

Preparation is essential to successfully land a remote job. As mentioned countless times, you have to stand out and be creative. This is your time to shine and make a great first impression.

Many remote jobs require at least two interviews. Initially, you will be interviewed by the recruiter or head of HR. The next interview will be with the head of the team you will be working in. From my experience, it is not unusual to have as many as 4 interviews, so be prepared.

Here is how to prepare for a remote job interview.

How to Prepare for a Remote Job Interview
Think about questions you might be asked

Firstly, go back to the job advert and write down the personality traits, skills and experience required for this remote job. The first interview is likely to focus on your personality traits and how you work in a remote team. There will be some basic questions about the role and your skills and experience.

In the 2nd and subsequent interviews, they will go more in-depth and ask questions on your experience and specific skills.

Pretend you have applied for a social media manager role. They are going to ask you to tell them about the tools you have used to meet goals and key performance indicators. They will ask you about your experience using the different platforms, your content strategy and how you have increased sales, etc.

What is the interviewer going to ask someone applying for the job? Think about the role and pre-plan the questions that might be asked.

Find interesting items about the company

There is very likely going to be a question on why you want to work for the company. By spending some time finding out interesting facts and news, you can mention this when answering questions.

So, if the company has recently completed a big project and the potential of working on similar projects in the future excites you, then tell them.

Spend time researching the company, its ethos and goals because this will help you understand the type of people they are looking for.

Write down your interview questions

Take a moment before the interview and think about any questions you would like to ask. Maybe find out expectations on your work routine, or, ask questions about the team you would be working with.

When you are in full flow of the interview, it is difficult to come up with questions. It shows a lack of preparation if you do not have any. As you go through the interview, do not be worried about taking a moment to write down any questions that come up.

Common interview questions are: What do the day-to-day responsibilities of the role look like? Is there anything about my background that makes you question whether I am a good fit for this role?

One question that will surprise the interviewer is, what is your favourite part about working at the company?

Clean your desk and surroundings

One of the personality traits required for most remote jobs is being an organised person. If in the background, it looks like an atomic bomb has exploded an unorganised mess then that is not going to help you.

Before the interview, take a moment to clean the surroundings and your desk. Make sure there is nothing around you that could distract the interviewer. The room needs to be well lit, so, try and sit opposite a window for natural light.

The majority of remote job interviews are via online video, so head over to our article on how to set up for your remote job video interview.

Dress smart and professional

Many will disagree, but in my opinion, you do not need to wear a suit and tie to a remote job interview. Make sure you are smart casual and look like the type of person a company wants to be hiring.

Have a shave, brush your hair and if you’ve eaten before the interview, make sure you don’t have embarrassing pieces of food left on your teeth or food stains on your face and lips! Don’t wear vests, or anything too revealing.

Check the timezone

Timezones can be a nightmare when it comes to interviews, so make sure you take the time to check and double-check the date and time. It’s not going to look good if you are late due to confusion in the timezone.

The majority of companies will send the interview invite through Google calendar. Assuming you have your timezone setup, it should display the correct date/time for you, avoiding any embarrassing situations.

You could also use tools like World Time Buddy, where you enter the locations, and it tells you the time in those places.

Do not stress about internet issues

Interviews are stressful enough without having to worry about internet problems. If you do not hear the interviewer because you lost the connection for a few seconds, don’t panic, just calmly ask them to repeat the question again.

It’s always worth having a backup for your internet so if your WiFi crashes to a halt, make sure to have your mobile phone or MiFi to hand as a replacement.

Hopefully, this article will help you prepare for your next remote job interview and reduce your stress levels and keep calm.

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