These days, more and more people are turning to freelance or work-from-home jobs to either save money, spend more time with their family, or pursue their passion.
However, many businesses transitioning to remote work and new remote workers might not know how to effectively conduct a work from home interview. So how can you make sure your potential boss is aware of your skills in this setting?
Whether you’re interviewing for a company that’s been doing work from home for years or one that’s just transitioning, here’s a guide on how to ace your work from home interviews.
How Do You Interview for A Remote Position?
It is becoming more and more common for employers to look for candidates who can work remotely, so as this becomes the norm, more job interviews will ask more questions about your WFH habits to figure out whether you’re the right fit for the role you’re applying for.
There are a few things that you can do to prepare for an interview to convince the employer that you would excel at the position, despite working from home.
- First, be equipped with your reasons. There is nothing wrong with wanting to work from home when you can prioritize your time. You should be able to answer questions about how you would manage the household while working from home, such as cooking, taking care of your child, cleaning and doing other tasks.
- Another critical question is what skills and qualifications you have for the role and how you can execute on your specialist tasks in a remote work setting. If it’s a marketing job, show that you know how to use various tools to communicate with the team and do social media work. If you’re in DevOps, demonstrate that you know how to execute upon some management methods and know how to use most tools needed to manage your dev team. . If it's a graphic design position, be prepared with examples of work that you have done, and show how you can achieve project deadlines.
- You should also be able to explain how communication will take place between you and your supervisor/co-workers. If you work in an office, communication will happen either by phone or email - how would this change when working from home? Do not say that you will work from home one day and continue working in the office on other days because this sounds like you are not committed to either situation.
How Do You Prepare for A Work-From-Home Interview?
There are specific skills you can show in your interview that will help to convince the interviewer that you would be up to the task of working from home.
First, make sure you are organized and able to prioritize tasks. Make a schedule for yourself, if necessary, which includes the time needed for each job.
- Be punctual - you should get started at least 5-10 minutes before your shift is officially scheduled to begin.
- Be prepared with the necessary equipment - you should know the details of all equipment you need for work (internet, computer, etc.)
- Be able to communicate well with both your supervisor and co-workers, synchronously and asynchronously - Use proper phone etiquette, such as speaking up and not mumbling. If you are using email, make sure it is professional and understand all emails you receive from them.
- Do not forget to have a positive attitude! - Even if you are having a difficult day, make sure to let it go and do your best for the sake of your employer. This is extremely important when working from home because fewer co-workers are around to help with work problems.
Work at Home Job Interview Questions and Sample Answers
Most Common and Essential Questions You Should Be Prepared For
- Do you have prior experience working from home?
- What is your reason for wanting to work from home?
- How do you plan on managing the household responsibilities while working from home?
- Do you have any children at home?
- Can you tell me about an example of a crisis that occurred in one of your past positions and how you managed it?
- What are your strengths - what makes you stand out from other candidates?
- What are your weaknesses - how can you improve, and what steps would you take to do so?
- What is your experience with multi-tasking?
- How well do you work under pressure and stress?
- When you work from home, how do you/would you decrease distractions?
- How do you stay informed about what is happening in your industry?
- How would you handle an emergency at home while working from home?
- What kind of equipment do you need for this position, and how will you use it?
Tips to Answer These Questions
- Emphasize your dedication, organization, and punctuality.
- Be prepared with examples of prior work experience that demonstrate how you worked under pressure or dealt with a crisis.
- Be sure to have at least one weakness - employers will want to know that you are not perfect! You can explain how you are working on this flaw to become a better worker.
- It is important to have examples of how you can balance household responsibilities - this shows your ability to multi-task.
- You should be prepared with both strengths and weaknesses so that you can explain how each one would benefit the company if they hired you. If you have any experience dealing with children, it is essential to mention this early on.
- Always sell yourself and your skills! Remember to stay positive and enthusiastic.
- When discussing working under pressure, be prepared with an example of how you handled a stressful situation.
- Be prepared to talk about the equipment necessary for this job and how you would use it. Do not forget to mention any experience that you may have, such as computers or other devices.
- You should keep your answer brief and to the point - do not go on and on!
- Give examples of how you can stay productive - do not mention your internet use!
- When talking about emergencies, give specific examples of times you helped your family and how you were able to remain calm and handle the situation.
- You should mention something about staying informed about your industry so that it does not appear as if you are unaware of what is going on in the company or business.
- Let them know that you are the best person for the job by explaining your relevant skills, knowledge, and interests.
- Be prepared to explain what you would need to do to improve.
- Again, be sure to sell yourself and express interest in previous work experience. Be enthusiastic throughout your interview!
Sample Answers to key work from home interview questions
Question 1: How do you plan on managing the different responsibilities while working from home?
Your Response: "I think it is important to have a balance between work and home. I would make sure to stay organized so that I am not overwhelmed by everything that needs to be done. In order to do this, I would block out my working hours from a certain time of the day until lunchtime. I will organize my other responsibilities into sections during each day of the week. In addition, I will make sure to take time throughout the week for myself to relax and unwind from my day."
Question 2: When you work from home, how do you/would you decrease distractions?
Your Response: "I really love working from home because it allows me to be around my family more and complete tasks while they are busy. However, I also have a tendency to get distracted - especially when there are household chores that need tending to. In order to stay productive, I will shut my door and use noise-cancelling headphones while I work. That way, I can focus on the tasks that need to be done without being disturbed."
Question 3: What is your experience with multitasking?
Your Response: "I have a lot of experience multi-tasking. Whether I am helping my children with their homework or doing tasks around the house, I do not let anything go unaccomplished. With all that is going on in my life, it is important to me to be organized and efficient so that I am able to get everything done. In addition, multi-tasking has been a crucial part of my career in product marketing. Whether it is dealing with customers on the phone or resolving their complaints, I have learned how to be efficient and complete several tasks at once."
Question 4: What are your strengths - what makes you stand out from other candidates?
Your Response: "When working from home, it is important to be organized and efficient - especially if you are working on your own. I believe this is something that I am very good at because I have a lot of experience with running my own business. Organizing schedules, menus, invoices, emails - these are all things that I am very comfortable with! In addition, I have a lot of experience in customer service - whether it is working with clients on the phone, online chat, email, or through social media. When I am not in my office at home, I do not hesitate to interact with others to assist them. That way, they are able to get the help they need when they need it."
Question 5: How do you stay informed about what is happening in your industry?
Your Response: " Since I am working from home, I try to keep up with what is happening in my industry through online resources. When not on the phone with customers, I will be sure to catch up on the latest news and trends so that it does not appear as if I am unaware of what is going on around me. I will also do my best to keep up with things that are happening in the company. If I am unfamiliar with something, I will always ask questions."
If you manage to answer all the questions successfully, you will leave an impression on your interviewer that you are a driven and motivated candidate. You also have what it takes to succeed in this line of work!
The most important thing is always being honest about your experience - even if it means admitting that you are unfamiliar with certain things. This can be achieved by telling your interviewer that you have no experience in a particular field but are willing to learn. Overall, it is vital to sound enthusiastic and eager about the position. Because you will be working for yourself, interviewing requires a lot of enthusiasm to convince the employer that they want you on their team!
For your next WFH roles, make sure your resume includes enough information about staying informed of what is happening in the industry. You'll also want to discuss any experience with multi-tasking and operations - this can help set yourself apart as an interviewee.
After all, these jobs require an individual who has more than just technical skills; they need someone capable of managing their own time while juggling tasks like meeting deadlines on their own. If working from home sounds appealing but overwhelming at first glance, don't fret! The most important thing is, to be honest during interviews so that employers know where your talents lie. And remember it's okay not to have any prior experience because there may still be a place for you on the team!