IN THE MIDDLE | beyond the job description

Through the Eyes of a Recruiter: Bridging the Gap Between Online and Offline Job Interviews

By Alyanna Silvestre
Published July 26, 2021

Since 2020, video conferencing software, such as Zoom, Skype, and Google Meet, has become a recruiter’s best friend when looking for the right talent. Meanwhile, job seekers have made themselves familiar with the basics of preparing for a video conference, which is to set up in a clean and quiet place and take the interview seriously by looking the part. However, dressing for success and setting up the perfect shot is not enough to get the job. So, straight from a seasoned headhunter and HR practitioner, Patt Soyao of the “Job Defined” podcast shares three things to keep in mind to help you effectively navigate through your next virtual interview!

Pay attention

Job seekers tend to forget to pay attention to their interviewers’ real-time reactions, which is a great way to see whether you’re doing fine or the meeting is becoming underwhelming.

The way the interviewers react and move their bodies can demonstrate how the interview is going for you. Their facial expression, posture, body language, and even the way they shift in their seat can provide a hint on their perception of you and your overall performance. Unfortunately, one of the tradeoffs of the convenient video interview is that it limits our access to such non-verbal cues. But don't worry, they're not completely gone. Next time, pay attention to the small details, like a squint, a tilt of the head, or a furrowed brow, so you can make necessary shifts and changes on the spot to divert the interview in favor of you when things are seemingly getting out of hand.

Learn your 3 W’s

Whether it's online or offline, knowing what to say, when to say it, and whom to say it to is important to ace an interview.

WHAT: Using industry-specific jargon and mirroring the language and tone of your interviewer or prospective employer can help you build a connection or rapport with the professional on the other end of the screen. To get the hang of it, make sure to research the company you are applying for and their organizational culture before your scheduled meeting.

WHEN: Most job seekers are eager to make a strong start, but according to Soyao, saying strong statements altogether can lead to other important details of your career and experience being downplayed. To avoid this, you can itemize your experiences and look for windows of opportunity to mention relevant information when it matters the most instead of rambling on about your capabilities all at once.

WHOM: Not all professionals assigned to question candidates are from the HR department, and these individuals often look for different things in an applicant that can help them identify the right talent. With this in mind, don't forget to do your homework and research not just key individuals in the company you're applying for but also the very professionals assigned to interview you so you can gauge their expectations and adjust your answers accordingly depending on their position in the company.

Exude Confidence

Sometimes, all it takes is good delivery.

There's not much difference between online and offline interviews as both practices can trigger anxiety. And while it is normal to feel nervous, if you let this emotion take over you, it may look as if you do not trust your capabilities despite your knowledge and expertise in the field you have chosen. To overcome this, Soyao advises to be excited about the opportunity, trust in your abilities, and believe the idea that you are the talent that the company is looking for starting from the moment you greet the interviewer up until the end of the meeting where you get to thank them with a "firm tone of assurance.”

Make or Break

For Soyao, physical interviews are not a thing of the past, but virtual ones are definitely here to stay. Thus, equipping yourself with these three tips will surely help you rule virtual interviews, guarantee an invite for that second meeting, or even turn the meeting into a job offer!

More Opportunities to Come

Are you looking for more handy job hunting tips? A new class from Nas Academy is coming catered specially for individuals and professionals looking to advance their job hunt regardless of where they are in their professional journey!

Icon Executive Asia and Nas Academy have recently partnered to bring a two-episode online job hunting class entitled "How to Get Hired."

Set on July 15 and 22 at 7:00 p.m., the online class aims to help all kinds of job seekers get hired for the job they deserve to build the career they want for themselves by looking at job hunting through the eyes of the recruiters.

Headlining the two-part course is Icon Executive Asia's managing director, Patt Soyao, and his trusted recruitment executives and Icon's founding iconic team members, Loradel Ang and Jay Avenida.

The registration fee is priced at P1,500, but Nas Academy and Icon Executive Asia are offering early bird registration rates to four interested participants and a 50% discount to 50 students who will use the promo code "PATTSTUDENT" upon signing up. 

Slots are limited; secure yours now! 

To register, please visit the link below: 


For more tips to advance your career, you may visit "Job Defined" on Spotify and Apple Podcast, or visit the series’ official Facebook page here. You can also follow Icon Executive Asia on Facebook and LinkedIn for more career insights and job opportunities.