Many companies utilize phone interviews as the first step in the hiring process. This is sometimes referred to as a phone screen and it can help filter out candidates before scheduling more in-depth interviews. Here are seven of our best tips for succeeding in a phone interview.
1. Try to use a landline
Yes, we no landlines have essentially gone extinct. But, many reports show the quality of sound and clarity in landline phones is better than any cell phone. So, if you have access to a landline, use it!
It may be tempting to put the phone on speaker so you have free hands to look over notes and jot down information. But, nothing is worse as a recruiter than conducting an interview on speaker phone where you can hear every single thing in the background.
3. Answer by saying ‘Hello, This is [your name here]’
Nothing is worse than the dreaded, ‘Hello, I would like to speak to Your Name’ and your response of ‘This is he/they/me/what.’ Avoid this by clarifying who you are as soon as you pick up.
4. Keep your resume, job application and the job posting handy
Keep all of this information in front of you to help you ask and answer questions. Bonus points for highlighting discussion areas you want to make sure to mention during the phone interview.
5. Keep an eye on the clock
Have a clock handy to check throughout the interview, you want to respect both your time and the interviewer’s time.
6. Silence is your friend
Don’t freak out trying to fill every single bit of silence. Without non-verbal cues it is hard to tell when you should stop chatting about yourself. Get used to silence and embrace it as a tool in the interview.
7. Ask questions
Not sure if you fully answered the last question? Don’t know if the interviewer needs more info? Instead of assuming, just ask—it goes a long way. And you’re not awkwardly chatting into oblivion trying to make sure you answer the question.