With much of the closure restrictions lifted in many areas, companies are beginning to ramp back up. That means more interviews and new hires!
In the age of the COVID-19, much of the interview etiquette rules are changing. Here is what you should know:
Depending on the type of job, inquire about a video interview.
While certain jobs are more likely to require in-person interviews, if it is a job where you may be working off-site or remotely, there is nothing wrong with asking about using video for the first interview. This is more likely to be granted if there are going to be multiple interviews before the position is offered to a candidate, or if stay-at-home orders are still in place.
But before asking for a video interview, be sure you have the proper equipment at home, along with the internet bandwidth and a professional setting in which to conduct the interview. It is never good to have the company say “sure” to your video interview only to have technical issues and kids or pets interrupting.
Wear your mask.
Do not ask if it is okay to not wear a mask – wear one. At least until you determine if the conditions are right for removing it.
Do not worry about what your interviewer might think of you wearing mask. You want to work for a company that takes its employees’ health seriously. As they are judging you, you should be judging them: do you want to work for a company that is not following the safety recommendations?
Say no to handshakes.
It is a breach of etiquette to offer to shake someone’s hand these days. If you are offered a handshake, politely decline. But it is perfectly acceptable to either wash your hands upon arrival or take a healthy dollop of antibacterial gel before you go into your interview.
Be prepared with COVID-related questions to ask.
You may already know some types of questions to ask in an interview like salary, benefits, processes there, and more, but inquiring about the company will show that you are invested. It may also be important to have some questions directly relating to COVID-19 ready to ask. Here are some to consider:
- How has the pandemic impacted your operations?
- Has it changed how employees are working?
- What types of cleaning/disinfecting are employees doing versus what the company is handling?
- Are employees being supplied with the appropriate cleaning materials?
- How has training/orientation for new employees changed with social distancing rules?
- Is the company optimistic about its financial stability? What is your forecast for future business? (Many companies had to downsize and/or lay off workers. You will want to know what the risks are if you are joining them.)
- What lessons have you learned from the pandemic?
- What health and safety protocols have you implemented for employees and customers?
- What is your sick leave policy? What happens if I am exposed and need to quarantine?
And we are ready to help you prepare for that nerve-racking interview!
Remember to follow up with a thank you note.
Just because some of the rules about interviews are changing, it does not mean all of them are. You should still do your proper research and follow up with a ‘thank you’ after the interview is over. This can be done with an email, phone call, or physical letter. If they accommodated your video interview request, that is the first thing to mention when you begin your thanks.
All in all, we wish you good luck in your employment endeavors and stay safe!