How to tackle one-way video interview?

What is a one-way video interview?

In short, it’s an interview where the interviewer isn’t present when the candidate answers the questions. That’s why they’re also known as one-way interviews.

The candidate answers pre-scripted interview questions.

How does it work?

Recruiters pre-set the questions concerning a specific job and send candidates a link through which they can record their answers within a deadline. Once a candidate submits his video the recruiter can then review and evaluate it in order to assess if the candidate would be a good fit and decide whether to invite him to a face-to-face interview.

When are one-way video interview used?

This type of interview happens at the beginning of the interviewing process, often as a replacement or supplement to the phone interview which has typically served as the first step in screening job candidates.

What are the benefits for the recruiting party?

One-way video interviews provide a more holistic comprehension of who a candidate is and a much more authentic answer to the nature of the motivation of the candidates that the motivation letter does. Motivation letters are rarely read during the screening phase and moreover nothing guaranties that it has actually been written by the candidate self.

Moreover, with the increasing trend of working remotely, ability to deal with remote technology, the capacity to connect and influence via video whatever synchronized or desynchronized is interesting to assess in the scope of the recruitment.

Thanks to one-way video interview, hiring companies and recruiting firms increase the number of candidates they assess in the first round.

What are the benefits for the job seekers?

Although, applicants mainly report not being fond of one-way interviews, there are a couple of benefits for job seekers: Thanks to one-way video interviews, more people access to the first interview round and first interview round can be done even when not yet physically in Switzerland.

The very first one-way interview is often a challenge for applicants, but usually things start to become much easier the second time.

How to prepare a one-way video interview?

Do your homework

Read carefully the job ad, try to understand what the job is about, what is the challenge it helps solving and the value it creates for the company. Try to figure out what competences are required, what soft skills are expected.

Learn about the company, their products/services, the competition landscape, their values, all the information you can find.

In case, the invitation to the one-way video comes with pre-read, read them carefully.
Very often you will be able to see who the Interview video providers are. By visiting their website, you will learn more about the concept, the way it works and maybe find some useful tips.

Set the place

• Set up the technical aspects
↪ Use a PC/laptop rather than your smart phone
↪ Secure you have a good internet connection.
↪ Close any unnecessary web browser tabs and applications.
↪ Switch off all notification alerts and turn your phone on silent more.
• Be sure you will not be disturb (no delivery, no kids, no pet, etc.)
• Have paper and pens at hand so that you can write down the key words for the questions you’ll have to answer.
• If that’s helpful, do not hesitate to stick notes on your wall, or desk about keywords you’d like to remember to use.

Give the best possible visual impression

• Set a good light: bright but not glaring, illuminating your face from the front. Natural light is best.

• Secure that the camera is at eye height.

• Make sur that whatever is in the background is neat and tidy and shows only what you are OK to show.

• Get dressed in the same way as for a face to face job interview

• Work on your posture and energy level. Do some posture exercises before you start.

• Seek for internal alignment.

• Smile and imagine that you are talking to a person.

Set some personal objectives

It’s important you are clear on the impression you would like to give and that you can put words on its nature.
It could be soothing like: Motivated, curious and convincing or Confident, reliable and mature. Simply take the time to define it and to write it down.

And practice

Most likely you won’t receive the questions in advance.
In case you do, practice the answer, seek the feedback from your coach.

If you don’t, be prepared to answer the most standard job interview questions and practice your answers till it feels natural to speak in front of the camera.


Before you record the interview, do something you know has the power to relax you ( a meditation, a walk, a tea, etc), before you press on start, take 3 big breathing.

Monitor your performance and reflect on your experience

When you have completed the recording, take 10 min to answer the questions:
- What worked well for you?
- How do you score yourself on the elements that were most important to you?
- If there would be one thing that you’d like to improve next time, what would that be?

Follow up

In case you have had a personal contact with the hiring company or the recruiting firm (e.g. the person who has sent the link to the video interview platform), send a short note to notify that you’ve completed the exercise and that you are looking forward to the next step.

Resource category;

Job-Search in Switzerland


Sandrine van den Oudenhoven


© 2020 Job4U2. All right reserved