There are many reasons to hire an interior designer. Maybe you need someone with the knowledge, skills, and experience to turn your space into a functional and aesthetically pleasing space that increases property value. Or maybe you want someone to alleviate the stress of designing an interior space by taking over the design process from the initial concept to the final installation. Whatever your goals may be, finding the right interior designer is crucial to accomplishing them. Luckily, technological advancement means deciding among multiple interior designers has never been easier. You can find out where a potential designer gets inspiration for their interior design work and check out their communication style, all remotely.
So if you’ve reached the interview portion of the hiring process, here are some tips for interviewing potential designers online.
Choose a Video Conferencing Platform
The video conferencing platform you choose is important as it’s how you’ll show a designer your space as well as get a look at their own space to gauge their sense of style for example.
Here’s what to prioritize:
- Accessibility for both you and the designer depending on things like geographic location, internet connectivity, and device compatibility
- High video and audio quality
- Screen sharing capabilities to allow for sharing of design concepts, portfolios, and other visual materials
- Ease of use
Prepare a List of Questions
If you’re thinking about freestyling the interview, reconsider. Having a list of questions is the easiest way to stay focused and get the information you need.
Here’s what your list should include:
- What is your design philosophy?
- Do you specialize in a particular style or aesthetic?
- How do you incorporate a client’s preferences into your work?
- How do you work with other professionals like architects or contractors?
- Can you provide references or examples of your past work?
- What is your fee structure and how do you handle billing and payments?
- What is your availability for starting and completing my project?
Test Your Technology
You don’t want to spend valuable interview time troubleshooting technical issues; it’s unlikely that a designer will have all day to chat and you wouldn’t want to spend hours on a single interview.
So it’s a good idea to test out your technology beforehand. Here’s how:
- Use an online speed test tool to check your internet speed
- Make a test call on your video conferencing platform to check your camera, microphone, and speakers
- Create a mock presentation or document to test out screen sharing
Take Notes or Record
Especially if you’ll be interviewing multiple candidates, taking notes or recording so that you can refer later will help you remember important details about each one and better compare.
If you go with the latter, keep in mind that it’s important to respect the privacy of the designers and obtain their consent before recording the interview.
After the interviews, create a comparison chart to compare the designers based on their experience, design approach, budget, specialty, and other factors that are important to you in order to evaluate each designer more objectively.
Interviewing an interior designer online can be simple. Just be sure to choose the right platform, test your technology, prepare questions, and take notes.