How to prepare for a phone interview and an online video interview?

The spread of coronavirus is changing the way we live, study and work. For security reasons, many employers and recruitment companies in Latvia and worldwide are moving from face-to-face interviews to telephone interviews and online video interviews.

While job interview questions are unlikely to change, there are some differences between face-to-face interviews and telephone interviews.

Telephone interview

Telephone interviews have historically been used as an initial method for screening candidates but are now becoming more widely used.

Tips for preparing for a phone interview:
    • Finding a quieter place when you see a call from an unfamiliar number. If this is not a good time to talk, feel free to ask them to call you after a certain time.
    • Prepare an information about yourself in one to two sentences. Read the cover letter – if you have taken the time to prepare it, you already have all the answers;
    • No need to respond right away. If you didn’t understand the question, feel free to ask. Demonstrate interest and ask questions;
    • After a phone call, ask yourself – what is your impression? Do you still want an internship or job in this company?


    • Live Video Interview

      You definitely need to be 100% ready. The quality of your online video interview depends on two things – your answers to questions and your ability to use modern technology. Before the interview, try it out with a friend who can judge the quality of your computer’s sound and picture connection. Skype, Whatsapp, Google Hangouts, Microsoft Teams and more, are the most common types of programs. Before the video interview, make sure the interviewer has your mobile phone number if you still need to do a phone interview.

      Tips for preparing for an online video interview:
          • Choose a quiet, well-lit room with a neutral background, sit down so you can easily look at the camera and your picture wouldn’t be distorted;
          • Make sure your room is clean so unnecessary items wouldn’t distract from the interview process;
          • Prepare your computer, check your internet connection speed, your computer’s microphone and camera before the interview;
          • Dress as if you were going to a face-to-face interview – home interview doesn’t mean you can dress up in home clothes;
          • Consider avoiding bright colored clothes or big jewelry that can distract you;
          • Schedule your time if you don’t live alone – agree to be alone in the room, warn your relatives / friends not to disturb you;
          • Close unwanted programs on your computer, avoid unexpected interruptions and strange sounds;
          • Prepare your resume and remarks that highlight why you would be the right candidate for this vacancy;
          • Before the interview research company information and a research the most recent information;
          • Think about the questions that you might ask the interviewer. It is best to write these questions on a sticky note and stick it to the monitor;
          • Pay attention to the intonation, timbre of your voice, as a monotone is the fastest way for an interviewer to lose interest in you;
          • Prepare a glass of water and put it beside you;
          • If you really want to get an internship / job, show it after the interview, write a letter of gratitude to the interviewer. Finally, be patient, as it may take a little longer than usual for your interviewer to decide.


          • Be Social and ActiveNow

            Your active presence on social media like LinkedIn is more important than ever. Share and comment on articles relevant to your field of study / profession. Join discussion groups, comment and post articles.

            RTU students can receive career counseling remotely by writing to Eva.Patmalniece@rtu.lv.

            For more information:

            RTU Career Center Edition “Career Day 2020” (20.03.2020.)

            Gabija Čeledinaitė Psychologist, career counselor at Vilnius Gediminas Technical University (20.03.2020.)

            5 things you must do to have a successful job interview on video during the COVID-19 outbreak (20.03.2020.)

            5 Tips for Job Searching During Coronavirus (20.03.2020.)

How to make studying from home effective?

Distance learning presents many new challenges to those who are in full-time education. Viktorija Gaina, a psychologist at Riga Technical University, summarizes the main problems students face and suggestions for solving them.

Arrangement of the working environment. It is very important to arrange the environment in your home for studying or working.
  • Think about which room and table you will work in, what materials you will need.
  • If you are sharing an apartment or a room with others, it would be desirable to arrange “quiet” hours for everyone to concentrate.
Clear rules. In an uncertain environment, it is important to follow or create rules ourselves.
  • Before you start, make a paperwork plan.
  • If you are pursuing a particular subject or a task, formulate what exactly you want to do in the next few hours.
  • If you are not clear about the course organization, the deadlines or form of the course, consult the Ortus, Estudies, contact the clerk or subject teacher. Productive action is impossible unless you understand and know exactly what is required of you.
System and regularity in learning are as important as training. Even if it is difficult, it is important to work on your study papers regularly and at about the same time. This time can also be seen as a wonderful opportunity to learn self-organization and self-motivation, which is so much appreciated by employers. General principles:
  • Work on one task in one go. Music or TV may not seem to bother you in the background, but learning from home disturbs us much faster than a face-to-face session.
  • Think about organizing incoming messages. At least while studying, if possible, turn off the sound and vibration.
  • When you start your work day, start with a job that you can do in couple of minutes or with some unpleasant work. This will help you warm up and give you confidence that you are working effectively.
  • Even when working from home, remember to take regular breaks and take care of yourself. A break is useful for some physical activity or a short walk in the fresh air. If this is not the case, ventilate the rooms where you are staying at least a few times a day. A warm, wholesome meal at least a few times a day and enough water will also help your thinking processes.
Here are some other tricks to improve your productivity:
  • In preparation for a workday, wear work clothes to separate your work time from your free time. If possible, the working space can also be separated from the lounge.
  • Make a to-do list because what you write down is usually different from the fictional and can be deleted. Write down the works to be delivered, the people to call or write, the e-lessons and meetings.
  • To-do list should be written in the evening for the next day – so you can get to work faster in the morning without wasting time planning.
  • Put together reminders for more important things.
  • Often, getting started is the hardest part. Leave the phone in another room and set the timer for 20 minutes. After the first 20 minutes, it will be much easier to continue. Take either the regular culinary timer or The Pomodoro Technique
  • Remember, not only do you have to start work on time, but also finish it on time! You also have the right to healthy laziness during self-isolation. A lot of free time can make you anxious about how to fill it in, but you shouldn’t overdo it.

EIT JumpStarter 2020 project!

If you are a student, reseracher or you’re passionate about new technologies and you have a business idea  within the following domains: healthcare, agri-food sector, raw materials, sustainability, energy, urban mobility or manufacturing – change your idea into a real company and compete for 10.000 euros!   FOR WHOM: anyone with an innovative business idea, students, Ph.D. students, scientists and graduates WHAT YOU CAN WIN: free training on business start-up within 10, 2-days workshops located in Europe, you can accelerate your business, meet business parters and network; moreover: one month free individual mentoring to the best business ideas, and prizes of 10.000, 7.000 and 5.000 euros to win in the Great Finals! APPLICATION DEADLINE: 5th of April 2020r, 17:00 CET. Find out more: https://www.lyyti.fi/reg/Jumpstarter-2020  and : https://youtu.be/KrokYq1cXr4  More about the project and link to online application here  

On RTU Career Day, Young People Will Meet With Businesses and Pursue Career Education Activities

Students from all Latvian universities are invited to the Career Day of Riga Technical University (RTU), which will take place on 6 March in the International Exhibition Hall in Kipsala and will bring together 130 company representatives from 40 different sectors, in order to gain insight into the situation on the labour market, meet with business representatives in person, establish contacts valuable for career development and participate in educational activities – a discussion, an inspirational workshop and a short interview to explore their opportunities for receiving a very concrete job offer. This year, the RTU Career Day, the largest youth professional orientation event in Latvia, will be held with the participation of Latvian businesses, as well as four foreign companies, inviting both Latvian and foreign students to it. The Career Day exhibition – meeting with representatives of busiesses at the Exhibition Hall will take place from 10:00 to 16:00 and the admission is free. To enable all RTU students to visit the Career Day, lectures will be cancelled from 12:30 on 6 March. Alongside with activities in the Exhibition Hall, where young people will meet with business representatives, three educational and practical career-related activities will take place: • At 11:00 – 12:00, a seminar on profession selection “The Future Is in Your Own Arms” will be held, chaired by TV personality and actress Ieva Florence-Vīksne. The lecturer will share her experience of seeking and finding her profession, will talk about obstacles, overcoming them and using them for her own good. One will also find out during the workshop where to take inspiration from when one wants to give up. Registration is by completing the application form. • At 12:30 – 13:30, discussion on future skills and labour market challenges will take place, with the participation of the Parliamentary Secretary of the Ministry of Education and Science Reinis Znotiņš, RTU Vice-Rector for Strategic Development Artūrs Zeps, Anta Praņeviča from Fontes company, representative of the Board of RTU Alumni Association and CEO of MILZU company Enno Ence. Participants of the discussion will present their vision of the most important issues on the labour market in terms of its development, inviting visitors to participate as well. The discussion will be moderated by Director of RTU Public Relations Department Ivars Svilāns. • At 13:00 – 17:00, a speed dating event will take place, with the participation of 50 companies, inviting students to a four-minute talk during which both sides will be able to assess the potential for starting an employment relationship. If interests of both parties coincide, the young people can receive very specific job offers after the event. Upon short interviews, students will be able to meet and talk to representatives of other companies as well. The time from 13:00 to 15:00 is allocated for talks in Latvian and from 15:00 to 17:00 in English, providing an opportunity for foreign students to attend the event. To participate in the speed dating event arranged by the social enterprise Visas Iespējas, it is required to register and complete the application form. More information is available on the Facebook page.

Job speed dating

WHAT? Visas Iespējas & RTU Career Day “Job speed-dating” event WHERE? International Exhibition Centre in Ķīpsala, exhibition hall on 2nd Floor WHEN? 6th of March 13.00 – 15.00 (LAT) / 15.00 – 17.00 (ENG) WHO? Young people who are looking for a full or part-time job Have you experienced that looking for a job can take a lot of time and in the end, you still don’t get what you wanted? Instead of sending several CV’s and motivation letters, meet companies “eye to eye” in a non-formal environment during RTU Career day “Job speed-dating” event which will happen on the 6th of March at 13:00 in the International Exhibition Centre in Ķīpsala, 2nd floor. Meet several interesting companies representing different sectors! 4-minute conversation with each representative will give you a chance to ask questions, tell about your talents and find out whether there’s a “match”! Event will happen in two parts: first part, which will happen from 13.00-15.00, will be in Latvian and meant for participants who can freely communicate in Latvian, while the second part of the event will happen in English from 15.00-17.00 and will be meant for foreigners living in Latvia and looking for a job. After each part, there’s also going to be half an hour for some networking that you can use to ask some extra questions and talk with representatives that you didn’t get the interviews with. PARTICIPATION IN THE EVENT: Participation is for FREE. However, to apply, you need to fill in a form until 23rd of February: Registration FORM for the 2nd part in English. IMPORTANT! After registration, you need to fill in a longer questionnaire, that we’ll send to your e-mail address closer to the start of the event. Afterwards, we’ll contact you to announce the results of the selection process. Do you want to find your job “match”? You have all the opportunities!

CV workshop

RTU Career Center and Foreign Students department invites to a seminar about CV and cover letter, and Internship organization procedure. RTU international students are invited to attend a seminar, which will take place on February 6th at 16.30 at the Faculty of Power and Electrical Engineering of Riga Technical University, room 115, Āzenes street 12/1. During a seminar, Viktorija Gaina from RTU Studentu Service will provide general information about CV and cover letter adapting for Latvian labour market. Signe Laizane from RTU Foreign Students department will speak about Internship organization procedure at RTU and process of getting a job. Apply by filling in an electronic form.  

CV Mondays

In preparation for the largest career development event in Latvia – Riga Technical University (RTU) Career Day, which will take place on March 6 at the International Exhibition Center in Kipsala, the RTU Career Center invites students to focus on career guidance.

RTU Career Center invites you to bring your CV with you to the event, so that the student’s interview with potential employers can be more successful, so you should prepare or update it in advance and improve it. «A CV is a business card for a potential employer and also a picture of ourselves. During the consultation, it is possible to get an ‘outside view’, which can help you tailor your CV to a particular job or simply notice details that you missed yourself, ”says Career Consultant Eva Patmalniece at RTU Career Center.

To create or improve their resume, students are invited to face-to-face career counseling on four Mondays, February 10, 17, and 24, and March 2  starting at 10am. 10am to 4pm in person at the Student Service Center, Azenes Street 6 or by sending a CV to Eva.Patmalniece@rtu.lv. You can get acquainted with the program and follow the latest news on the website of the RTU Career Center and the RTU Career Day 2020 Facebook page.

According to the order of RTU Vice-Rector for Studies Professor Uldis Sukovska on March 6 from 12.30 to 16.00 Lectures are canceled for RTU full-time study programs, providing all students with the opportunity to attend RTU Career Day.

Working in Latvia: tips and tricks on how to find a good job in Latvia

Seminar: Working in Latvia: tips and tricks on how to find a good job in Latvia The seminar will take a place on Tuesday, February 4th, 16:30-18:00 at Riga Technical University Faculty of Power and Electrical Engineering, room 115, 12/1 Azenes Street. Seminar is organized in cooperation with SIA Cabot Latvia. Cabot Corporation is a global specialty chemicals and performance materials company with 4500 employees worldwide. SIA Cabot Latvia is a Business Service Center (BSC) for Cabot EMEA and North American regions which is actively expanding now and soon will have 220+ talented team members. Within the BSC organization, Cabot is ensuring core end-to end business processes: Report to Record (R2R), Plan to Deliver (P2D), Source to Pay (S2P) and Order to Cash (O2C). In addition to that, Latvian office has a number of other functions that supprot Cabot organization on regional or global level. Finding a job can be easy, but at the same time getting a job offer for the position you really like can be very difficult. The purpose of this seminar is to give an overview of how employment market in Latvia works. We will dive into personal and professional attributes that local and international employers are looking for in potential employees. Main topics:
  • Latvian employment market;
  • What employers are looking for;
  • How to best present yourself to the potential employer
Seminar will be led by: Marija Gendriksone, Talent Acquisition Lead at Cabot Corporation for EMEA and North American regions. Marija is working in recruitment since 2012 and has been a part of  the international organization, recruitment agency and currently employed with Cabot since opening of the BSC in 2014. Over these years, Marija gained  extensive experience sourcing for  professionals in various fields including IT, manufacturing, engineering, business leadership, commercial, finance, etc. Marija has identified a set of candidate attributes that are attractive to employers and others, that can easily turn employers off. During the seminar, Marija will share her knowledge and will be open to answer to questions of the audience. Seminar language – English. Participation is limited, please register in advance! Register for the seminar by filling the electronic application form For additional information please contact eva.patmalniece@rtu.lv

Seminar about IBANPAY

RTU Career Center invites to a seminar about company IBANPAY

RTU international students are invited to attend a seminar about company IBANPAY, which will take place on January 27 at 18.30 at the Faculty of Power and Electrical Engineering of Riga Technical University, room 116, Āzenes street 12/1.

During a seminar, IBANPAY’s representative Dmitrijs Golonovs will provide general information about company, provided services, competitive advantages and vacancies foreign students are welcome to apply for.

IBANPAY is specialized in provision of outsourced services in the areas of customer support, payment processing, customer relationship management, change control, risk management and data gathering and filing.

If you speak English and one of the following supported languages: ES, DE, IT, RU, TR, AR, PT, FR, PL, CN, JP you may find your future employees there.

Applying by filling in anelectronic form.

Call for volunteers

Every year RTU Career Center hosts Career Day and thsi year it will be held on March 6, 2020. The aim of Career Day is to inform engineering, natural and social science students about the best and strongest companies in their respective fields, to connect with potential internships and employers.
 
Every year the most active RTU students and students of other institutions join our organisers team. If you also want to gain experience in organizing a big event and meet new people, join our volunteer team by December 20: https://ej.uz/KD2020
 
Follow the news on our website and check out last year’s RTU Career Day 2019 photo gallery. If you have any additional questions, write to karjera@rtu.lv.