The Three Popular Questions During A Virtual Interview

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Preparing for your virtual interview: These are the questions you could be asked!

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Interview questions can really throw candidates off if they’re not prepared. It’s a part of the interview that scares many people because of the pressure it puts on you. DirectlyApply have taken a look at the most common and popularly searched for questions to help candidates prepare for their virtual interview.


(most common)

Question  Average monthly search volume*
1st Why do you want this job? 3,600
2nd What are your biggest weaknesses? 1,900
3rd What are your salary expectations? 1,900
4th Why do you want to leave your current job? 1,300
5th Tell me a little about yourself? 1,000
6th What are your biggest strengths? 720
7th Where do you see yourself in five years? 590
8th What questions do you have for me? 210
9th What do you consider to be your biggest professional achievement? 90
10th What do you like to do outside of work? 90

*average search volume for May-Jun 2020 in the US.

The Three Most Popular Questions Asked During A Virtual Interview

We asked HR experts for their top tips on how to answer the three most popular questions to help candidates prepare for virtual interviews during COVID-19

Why do you want this job?

Sarah Dowzell, Co-Founder of Natural HR says, “I look for candidates to demonstrate a genuine interest in the role they’re interviewing for, the company itself and our industry – and prove they’ve done their research on us. I also look for candidates to explain how their experience and skills fit the role we’re looking for and why they are the right person for the job.

Simply stating the job “matches all of my skills” is not enough.”

What are your biggest weaknesses?

Sarah Cape, Head of HR for Meddbase, shares her tips; “If you’re worried that you’re not qualified enough for a role or have some technical gaps, then steer your response towards your passion for self-improvement and professional development.

Prove your commitment to learning by drawing on an example from a previous role where you bridged a knowledge gap.  We all have weaknesses but if you can convey a willingness to succeed, then you can create a positive impression from a fairly negative question.

What are your salary expectations?

Firstly, be aware of the pitfalls with this question – if you go in too high, you might be ruled out and if you go in too low, then you might not be happy with the final offer and it’s hard to work it back up again.

The golden rule though about salary negotiation is to leave it to the end of the process, when the company really wants to hire you – the more they want you, the more they will fight to get you! So, make sure you have sold yourself well throughout the process”, comments Alice Weightman, CEO and the Founder of Hanson Search and the Work Crowd.

Experts share their tips on how to ace virtual interviews:

“With virtual interviews, normal body language is easy to miss so make a point of using facial expressions and gestures that demonstrate your passion for the position. I look for candidates that can express themselves and explain why they’re a good fit for our company.

Test your technology beforehand to make sure your connection, audio and camera is working correctly so you can get off to a good start. Any technical difficulties will knock your confidence and you won’t make the best first impression on your prospective employercomments Sarah Dowzell, Co-Founder of Natural HR

Scott Jones, Managing Director for Illustrate Digital said, “Don’t be boring and don’t be too professional. The best video interviews I’ve had are when the candidate has a two-way chat and genuinely cares how my day is, how I’m finding working life in the pandemic and seems genuinely happy to be there.

“It sounds bizarre, but you’d be surprised how you can come across when you’re nervous. You’re talking to a human, so be human about it. And if you can make them laugh, or smile, bonus!

“When preparing for a video interview, definitely think about what is behind you or who is the house. Don’t distract the interviewer thinking about what’s in your house, keep it plain if possible, let them focus on you. Got kids? Ask your other half to take them out for a walk if possible. Anything to make sure you’re in a quiet space and can be relaxed. If you know the kids will burst in, maybe give them a heads up, we’re all in the same boat.”

Alice Weightman also adds, “As with face to face interviews, practice is key – think about the questions they are likely to ask, do your research and develop some good answers. Practice saying these out loud with family or friends – it might feel embarrassing but it’s best to mess up with a family member than on an interview for your dream job! It can be slightly harder over VC if you aren’t used to this type of interview – so practice is more important than ever.

“I find if I am on a laptop, it’s best to raise it up on a couple of books so my eyes are at a better level, and I try to look at the camera, not at the person – it’s hard but it makes for a better dialogue. Do be careful not to constantly look around your room, as it makes it look like you can’t have eye contact.”

About DirectlyApply

DirectlyApply was founded in 2019 in London, England with a mission statement to provide the best job discovery experience possible for job seekers and to help employers attract and engage with talent.

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