Ten Top Tips on Mastering Your Virtual Interview

Ten Top Tips on Mastering Your Virtual Interview

Virtual handshake

Working from home is fast becoming the new norm and with the disruption lockdowns bring, that can mean your next job interview will be a virtual one.  So how do we put our best selves forward online?

Take a look at our Ten Top Tips on mastering your virtual interview.

We at Fraser People like to use Zoom, but these tips will apply to any video conferencing tool.

1.  Test! Test! Test!

Test your technology to ensure you are all set up for success. Check your internet connectivity, and confirm your camera and microphone are working.  If it’s software you are not familiar with, save everyone’s time and avoid any hiccups by being prepared.  Please do not leave it until five minutes before the interview.

2.  Lighting 

A room with optimal lighting near a window or a blank wall makes you the focal point of the conversation. You don’t need the most expensive tech equipment to look good. Just make sure you are easy to see and that your face is not in a dark shadow.  Allow the opportunity to engage with your interviewer.

Whether you sit on your living room couch or in your home office, tidy up your surroundings. It’s hard to convince employers you are detail-oriented and organised when there’s a pile of laundry in the corner.  Zoom can show you a preview of your video feed before you join a call. This is perfect for catching any problems before you go live.

Master your Virtual Interview
Master your Virtual Interview

3.  Eliminate any distractions.

Once settled, eliminate all distractions. Turn off the TV, silence your cell phone, and close nearby windows to muffle neighbourhood traffic.


Eliminate distractions

4.  Be Prepared

Just because you’re on a computer doesn’t mean you can search the web for answers mid-interview, so avoid clicking around. You want to appear focused and ready to answer any questions without the help of the internet.

Research the company ahead of time and jot down notes for easy reference. Print out a copy of your resume, so that you don’t forget key talking points.  If necessary, write stuff on Post It notes and stick them on the computer for you to glance at.


5.  Practice

You don’t want to sound like a robot, so practice your answers. Keep things simple. Don’t feel like you must give a long-winded answer if the question doesn’t warrant it. Being clear and concise is one of the most vital things in a job interview.

Clear and consise

6.   Body Language

The best way to communicate confidence is to sit up straight, smile, and keep the camera at eye level – keep your focus on the camera – making eye contact. Do not use a second monitor.

7.  Dress Appropriately

You might be sitting near your bed, but you shouldn’t look like you just rolled out of it. Dress as you would for an in-person interview, (from the waist up at least 😊).

Dress appropriately

8.  Connect

It’s not easy to connect with everyone, but it’s a crucial part of a virtual interview. You want the interviewer to remember a personal story you told, or a common interest you share which prevents you from blending in with the other applicants.

9.  Be Yourself

It’s hard to translate your enthusiasm in a virtual interview. Try to be expressive when giving your answers. Show your personality and confidence through body language and facial expressions.

Virtual Interview

10.  Follow Up

Your Recruitment Consultant will want to know your impressions from the interview. Be ready with your feedback on what you liked or disliked. They can then help clarify any questions you may have.

You can also send a thank you email to your interviewer. Not only will it show you value their time, it highlights you are friendly and approachable.

Remember part of any interview process is assessing if the company culture is the right fit for you. 

This can be harder to do in a virtual interview as you may miss clues that you notice when in their workplace.

Check out our 6 signs of a positive culture .


Newsletter February 2021

Newsletter February 2021

Fraser People Banner

Life’s Short so Surround yourself with the Right People

Happy New Year. 😀 We hope you all had a relaxing break and are feeling recharged for the year ahead.

We hit the ground running in January with new roles and further briefings booked….so watch this space.  How are you bringing some of that positive energy from your holiday back to your workspace to keep that holiday high going? 😎

I always have a holiday pic on my desk as a reminder of time away recharging. This one of Izzy the office dog is a favourite – meeting some of the wild Donkeys on Ponui Island. It was amazing to see how gentle they were with each other. 😍 🐾

What a great reminder that anything is possible.  With that in mind and in the words of Brene Brown the 2021 plan is to “stay, awkward, brave and kind”.
Carol Fraser

Below: Izzy the office dog meeting some of the wild donkeys on Ponui Island. It was amazing to see how gentle they were with each other.

Action Calendar February 2021

We love these calendars from Action for Happiness with a new theme each month.  What a great way to kick off February with a focus on reaching out to connect with others.  So many great suggestions to boost relationships.  Click here to visit their website 

Fraser People cupcake

We had a great start to the New Year getting out to visit the team at VOYCE – Whakarongo Mai.  I was asked to attend the Whakatau (formal welcome) for their new staff. Such a lovely way to see Mildred settling into her new role – that included Waiata, and  Whakawhanaungatanga (introductions – getting to know each other).🤗😍

Congratulations again Mildred, we are delighted for you – joining a great team.🙌👏
Enjoy the gift of giving from The Good Registry to donate to a charity of your choice.

Pictured from left to right: Carol Fraser and Mildred Mutengezanwa

7 Top Tips to Help your Job Application Stand out

Fraser People Stand Out from the Crowd

In our (relatively) Covid-free Aotearoa, the job market has been extremely active as we head into 2021.  (More on this to come).

It’s a crowded market for job applications. You may have heard talk of the huge numbers of applications for a role, and recruiters and employers struggling to keep up.

So, how do you stand out from the crowd if you are applying for a job right now? Click here to read our blog.

Behind the Scenes

Being in front of the camera for work is something that Carol is still getting used to.  Leila couldn’t resist putting together this clip of outtakes from 2020.  Enjoy!

Many of you now know Leila as Client Services Manager at Fraser People, the person who keeps me moving along 😎 Many of you also know she is in fact, my Sister. 🤗

What you may not know is Leila is a very talented singer and musician. 🎵 I’ve spent many nights over the years in the crowd when her Band plays, singing along – always a great time.
I’m proud to share she has taken her passion for singing even further and started her own side hustle as a vocal coach. I’m all for the side hustle – yes there is the juggling act between roles, however seeing someone utilise even more of their creativity is a good thing. 👏👏

Singing is good for you!
It’s proven to be good for our mental health, lower stress levels, improve sleep, strengthen our immune system and increase confidence. How good is that, after the year we’ve all had!

Leila will tell you that everyone can sing – but to sing well is a skill that can be developed. Who’s keen? Give Leila a shout – the only thing better than singing is more singing! 🎤🎤

Check out her website for more details www.leilamcintyre.co.nz 

Leila McIntyre Backbeats NZ
Leila McIntyre Vocal coach
Fraser People Encourage Mint
7 Top Tips to help your Job Application Stand Out

7 Top Tips to help your Job Application Stand Out

Fraser People stand out from the crowd

In our (relatively) Covid-free Aotearoa, the job market has been extremely active as we head into 2021.  (More on this to come).

It’s a crowded market for job applications. You may have heard talk of the huge numbers of applications for a role, and recruiters and employers struggling to keep up.

So, how do you stand out from the crowd if you are applying for a job right now?

We’ve put together 7 top tips

to help you get noticed!

1.  Is your CV relevant for the role you are applying for?

Do your research to understand what the job involves and what the employer is seeking.  Always submit a CV that is relevant to the job you are applying for.

Pull out specific experience that you have for that role or sector.  Don’t just randomly apply in the hope you might get a call. Think of your CV as a marketing tool. Why would they hire you? In this market, it will come down to your ability to highlight your core skills and experience.

2.  Use structure to your advantage: make your application count 

Clarity is key!  You have around 20-30 seconds to grab the hiring manager or recruiter’s attention. Make your resume readable and uncluttered to encourage them to read on.  A lot of companies use AI technology to scan CV’s for key words. Keep your CV left aligned, use bullet points to break up wordy paragraphs to make it easy to skim read.   Get  the basics right, including the correct company and hiring manager on your application. Check and recheck for spelling mistakes, or have someone else look it over before applying.

3.  Highlight your best bits

Rather than a list of all the previous positions you have held, keep the CV to 2-3 pages tops.  Emphasise the key roles that are relevant (that word again) to the role.  Your CV should be outcome focused not a long list of responsibilities that run to 20 pages (true story!!) What did you achieve in the role – rather than what was expected?


Fraser People highlight your best bits

4.  Make connections

If you have the details of the person recruiting the role, don’t be shy to pick up the phone to ask them some good questions about the role. Do this well and you will leave a good impression when your application arrives. Find out if you have any mutual connections or people who may work in the organisation and check in with them for feedback to see if the company is right for you.

See our blog on 6 signs of a positive company culture    

Fraser People Make a Connection

5.   Don’t apply for every role going

You may think it’s best to get your CV out there for every role. Rest assured there is nothing more off-putting than having one candidate apply for every role you have advertised.  It’s not possible to be the right fit for all roles, so please rethink this approach.  Keep a good record of the roles you are applying for. When the phone rings don’t waste the opportunity struggling to recall which role and company it was.  Be interested! Those first interactions are memorable for the recruiter – make it count.   

6.  Adjust your social media

Many of us forget that what goes online stays online, which can come back to haunt us when applying for roles.  Trust me, the employer and recruiter will be checking your online profiles before they call you. Check those privacy settings!

Fraser People Social Media

7.  …. and last but not least the cover letter

Ah, the dreaded cover letter. Does anyone really read these? Wouldn’t it be so much easier if I could just let my CV speak for itself?

Yes! Cover letters do in fact, get read. To some hiring managers, they’re the most important part of your application. While it would be easier to let your CV speak for itself, if that was the case you’d completely miss the opportunity to tell prospective employers who you are. Showcase why they should hire you which will help you stand out from the rest.

Video cover letters are becoming more commonplace, so don’t be afraid to show your personality here in less than 60 seconds.  Maintain eye contact, and show your enthusiasm for the role.

Fraser People cover letter
Fraser People Video Cover Letter

If you have read this far, you may be finding it tough out there.  How you apply is crucial to making it to the next round.  If you’d like more information or help with this, give us a shout.

Newsletter November 2020

Newsletter November 2020

Newsletter Issue December 2020 Fraser People

2020 is almost over!!

It’s the first of December and the end of a very long year for us all is in sight!  Summer officially starts today. Here’s to the warmer weather and getting out to enjoy the beach in our (almost) Covid free Aotearoa.

The Job Market

The job market has been steadily picking up and we are engaging in conversations with clients to plan new roles to market this month and into the new year.  Statistics highlighted in JobAdder’s 2020 Recruitment industry report support this increase in activity as the NZ job market begins to focus on recovery.  As we return to pre-pandemic levels, employee engagement should be a key focus to retain top talent.

A month of Anniversaries

October was a month of anniversaries for me. A month when I’ve experienced many of the best and the worst times of my life.  I wrote this blog one year into my business journey and two years after losing the love of my life.

I heard a saying somewhere that “out of our pain we find our power.” It’s certainly what has driven me, and I’ll always be grateful for the support I have received.

When big stuff happens in life that is out of our control, it can create a shift in mindset or drive the need for change.

With the year we have all had – Option A is no longer available for many of us. So here’s to you all kicking the sh*t out of your option B, C, or D!


Carol Fraser

Fraser People Cupcakes
It was great getting out to visit with cupcakes again in level 1, as well as the gift of giving from The Good Registry.
We wanted to congratulate Lexi in her first week as Marketing Content & Communications Executive at The Produce Company.  We love a visit that includes hi-vis.

Pictured Left to Right Leila McIntyre, Tina Klay (Marketing Manager) Lexi Lee with Carol Fraser

Why do we Procrastinate?

Fraser People why do we procrastinate?
 With the end of a very long year almost in sight – are you struggling to be as productive as you would like to be? We all struggle with delaying or putting things off at some point. This image created by @lizandmollie on Instagram is thought-provoking, beating procrastination starts with practising self-compassion. 🤗 Research has found that self-forgiveness is one of the best cures for procrastination. Sound simple?

Click here for some great tips on how to overcome procrastination.

4 Steps to finding your Career Passion

Fraser People Career Passion

“After a year like no other, I’ve had many conversations with people lately who have been reflecting on their career paths.  The world has changed and Covid has seen to that!  Some have experienced a change that was out of their control, others are feeling stuck and want a career change. They want to find their passion but have no idea how to go about it.” 

Check out the blog

A Special Mentor Moment

Carol Fraser Mentor Moment
It was a very special mentor moment at Maria’s 21st.  There’s so much to celebrate. She has just completed the final year of her degree and is now in Wellington in her paid internship with MBIE – after being accepted into the Tupu Tai Pasifika Public Sector internship programme. So great!
Our Journey

I’ve shared some of our mentor/mentee journey before which started back when Maria was 14 and we were matched through the YWCA Future Leaders programme. When she was awarded a scholarship to Uni through First Foundation, I was humbled when she asked me to continue as her mentor through their programme and we navigated through her university life together.

Watching this dynamic young woman grow in confidence and self–belief has been an absolute privilege, and I have loved every minute.

After almost 7 years together there is much to be proud of, however, the most rewarding thing for me is we are now family. If you are considering volunteering in some way – get involved! I’ve certainly got so much from it.

It's Time to Celebrate
Fraser People turns 3

Fraser People is 3 years old!  Taking a moment to acknowledge and celebrate this anniversary has been much needed after a year like no other! Each year in business has taught me something – there have been many lessons this year and the uncertainty of what was ahead has been overwhelming at times.

After the roller coaster of 2020, we choose today to celebrate the highlights and the amazing people we get to work with. To all my clients and the great people, we have met along the way thank you. I appreciate your support and wouldn’t be here without you – you all rock! 🤗 👏👏

Highlights have included:

💥 My Sister Leila coming to work with me ( starting 2 weeks before the first lockdown – who knew!!) It’s awesome having her to share this journey, and have some fun with too!
💥 Being a finalist again this year in the RCSA Industry awards. I love what I do and am humbled by this acknowledgment.
💥 Having a broader offering allowed us to also focus on career coaching and career transition work to support people through this year.
💥 Being able to give back where we could – so many great conversations!

No photo would be complete without Izzy the Office Dog – she is the best! 🐾
Fraser People was my big “aha” moment in life after loss, it’s been my anchor and I’m so damned proud of it now having a life of its own.

Fraser People Joke

Newsletter October 2020

Newsletter October 2020

Fraser People Banner

Life’s Short so Surround yourself with the Right People

Welcome to our October 2020 edition!  It’s great to finally be back in Level 1 here in Auckland to join the rest of NZ.  Getting out to enjoy daylight savings and with summer just around the corner, we are feeling hopeful as we head towards the end of what has been an eventful year for us all!

Hasn’t it been an adjustment through the levels?!  Flexibility is the key word for 2020.

We’ve been working with some career coaching clients lately whose roles were disestablished due to Covid. While it’s been a difficult time for those involved, the businesses they worked for have without hesitation, courageously supported their people by investing in outplacement support.

That’s where Fraser People stepped in to offer career coaching to assist them as they transition back into the job market. Providing encouragement and the tools to put their best selves forward for a new role, we have been thrilled to see them being offered great new roles.

In our last Newsletter issue, we offered free CV reviews – and you responded!  We really enjoyed being able to give back in some way. With a crowded job market  it’s key to have a CV that stands out!

Is the job market on the mend?  We are seeing encouraging signs nationally, and heartened by discussing new roles with our clients.   Watch this space.

Have a great weekend and go the All Blacks!

Carol Fraser

We were so looking forward to an evening of wine tasting hosted by Sir John Kirwan (JK).  It was our first big outing post the first lockdown and what an uplifting evening it was (and not because of the food & wine which was great!) His generosity and warmth captured our hearts.

His stories were so inspiring, he really made a genuine connection with us al!  Check out our smiles, don’t we look happy with ourselves!

Fraser People with Sir John Kirwin

7 Ways to Brighten Someone’s Day

Every year in Aotearoa, we focus on Mental Health Awareness . There is no escaping that 2020 has created some huge challenges for us all, right across our daily lives.

This year’s theme, “Reimagine Wellbeing Together” – He Tirohanga Anamata, encourages us to reflect on the big and small actions we’ve taken to take care of each other this year.

Sometimes it’s hard to reimagine what wellbeing looks like.  We all have mental wellbeing and it can mean different things for us all. It’s a timely reminder to embrace the simple things we can do each day to really help strengthen our wellbeing, that can help us through the tough times.

There was a new theme each day – beginning with “Recharge with others” – Whiria te muka tangata.

Check out the Mentemia website where they have lots of daily activities, talks and tips for the week of Mental Health Awareness.  Tiny yet thoughtful gestures that make the world a better place.


7 Ways to brighten someone's day

A positive, ethical work culture where we can thrive is what we all want – right? How do we assess this when interviewing for a role?  Read the article here


6 Signs of a Positive Company Culture

Here’s a throwback to a time before lockdowns, bubbles and hand sanitiser, and it was only February this year! We were proud to support C U Later Yachting in their epic adventure in the 2020 Round North Island yacht race. 

The Boys sent us some drone footage taken approximately 100 nautical miles off the West Coast of Aotearoa, the calm before the storm during leg 2 to Wellington.

It looks so tranquil, but it’s such an isolated location for one of the smallest and more extreme boats in the fleet. Inspiring stuff indeed. 

Check it out if you want a little mindfulness break today.

Fraser People Blog

This was our first opportunity to escape Auckland after both lockdowns.  A much needed break to reflect, reconnect, relax and plan together. It certainly left us feeling re-energised and refocused for the rest of the year.

Fraser People Funny
6 Signs of a Positive Company Culture

6 Signs of a Positive Company Culture

6 Signs of a Positive Company Culture

Are you looking for a new job? Do you want to know if the company you have an interview with next week has a healthy, positive, and ethical work culture? What are the 6 signs to look for in a positive company culture?


We had fun collaborating with Walk Ethical who chatted to Carol Fraser to discover some of the signs to watch out for that can help through this process.

Follow these 6 signs

to assess the culture of your next, potential employer

6 Signs of a Positive Company Culture

What are the 6 signs of a positive company culture? Recession, changing industry hiring patterns and adjustments to the way we work are some of the harsh realities faced by thousands of job seekers around the world, amid the Covid-19 crisis. It may seem like a demotivating and frustrating journey with no end in sight. Due to circumstances, stress, and anxiety, you may feel like picking up any role that comes your way.

However, it is important to hold on and remember being in the wrong job and working for a company that does not suit your personality, can lead to further stress, and have a detrimental effect on your health and wellbeing.

We spend 8 hours of our day in a professional environment. We put a lot of our time and energy towards achieving goals and building relationships at work. So, it is equally important to consider the right company culture for you, when weighing up a new role or while preparing for a new job interview.

Based on our experiences we have outlined six signs to watch out for, that can help you determine whether a company follows ethical practices and has a healthy, positive work environment:



First Impressions Last

The first step in determining a company culture starts with the pre-interview process. Observe your interaction with the team, or the interviewer from the very first email or call. Note how the interviewer speaks to you or the way they sign off an email. This can tell you a lot about the company, its culture, and the general feeling among the team. 

6 Signs of a Positive Company Culture

Suffice to say, just because someone signs off an email with “Sincerely” does not mean that the company has a formal culture. However, if this gives you a pause, then look for signs of flexibility. Did the interviewer give you multiple dates as an option for the interview? Did they let you lead the conversation during the phone call?

Social Media to the Rescue

After you have had your initial contact with the company, you can start with the easiest form of research – social media channels. By following conversations on the company’s various platforms, it should be straight-forward for you to determine their culture.

You can look for whether they showcase their employees on social media or do they applaud their suppliers and clients on their success. These posts or conversations, will give you an insight into whether the company has a culture of recognition and appreciation.

6 Signs of a Positive Company Culture

Tone of Conversation at the Top

It is said, “people tend to leave bosses not organisations.” Bosses are one of the most commonly stated reasons for employee exits. Creating a “healthy culture” flows from the top and you can spot this by reading the company’s external communications – press releases, company blogs and news. 

Analyse the tone of these blogs – are there any words or phrases or values that are against your own? 

If the director of a company talks about “hustle” in one of the blogs, compare that with your priorities and see if it is the right fit for you when you are looking to raise your young family.

6 Signs of a Positive Company Culture

Get an Insider’s Perspective into the Company

It is important to research not only the company but also the manager that you will be working with. You can find more information about the manager on their LinkedIn page, or sometimes on the company website. If you are part of the creative industry, you can also look through their portfolio and see if their work resonates with you.

However, one of the best sources of research is your own network. The world is now relatively a small place, where everyone knows everyone. Talk to your network, former employees to gain an insider’s view into the company. This combined with your other observations should give you a great insight into the company culture.

6 Signs of a Positive Company Culture

Conversation During the Interview

During the interview process, make a note of the small things.

While most of us do not recall the exact conversation during an interview, it is important to take a note of your gut feeling. Learning to trust your gut is something we as humans learn through trial and error, however, keep an eye on any signs of unsettled feelings. 

Did you feel uncomfortable when the interviewer asked you if you have kids? Or did you think the atmosphere around the office was too relaxed for a non-Friday? Making a note of these signs will help you determine if the company environment is right for you.

6 Signs of a Positive Company Culture

Ask Questions 

We all know the importance of asking the right questions during interviews. It not only helps you know more about the company, but also gives the interviewer insights into things that are important to you.  

Questions such as “Do you have a structured or unstructured environment?” or “What would success look like for this role?” will help you assess whether you will fit into the company.


6 Signs of a Positive Company Culture

One of the recommendations from Carol Fraser, Founder and Director of Fraser People was to ask, “what qualities do their most successful team members tend to have?” According to her, “You could get a standard response but how they answer will give some insight into who you will be working with”.

Working in a positive, healthy and ethical atmosphere can have a big impact on your overall job satisfaction and results. When it comes to assessing company culture, there’s no one-size-fits-all metric.

Know what your basic needs are, learn to trust your instincts and ask the right questions – this will help you make a fully informed decision about your next step. 

Good luck!