Phone interviews are becoming more and more common. They can help employers screen and narrow down the number of applicants that will come to an in-person or even video interview. On a phone interview, you will typically expect something quick. An interviewee may discuss the job opportunity, determine if you are going to be a good fit, and gauge interest in the company.
Each phone interview you have will be slightly different based on the company. It is better to be overprepared rather than underprepared. If you are wanting to do well in a phone interview, then prepare to do well. Set yourself up for success by reviewing the job description, research a little bit about the company and/or who is interviewing you, prepare some answers to common interview questions, think of questions you have about the company/ role, and practice your speaking voice. When going into a phone interview you won’t have the element of body language. Therefore, you will have to rely only on your voice. Practice your speaking voice and voice connotation. You would be shocked at how different sentences sound based on how we say them.
Before a phone interview, be sure to confirm the details of the call beforehand including the date, time, and with whom you will be speaking. Be sure to know if you are expected to make the call or if they will be calling you. Make sure that during the phone interview, your phone will be charged and you are in an area with good reception.
Interview tips from some of Maxum Groups top recruiters
Never answer a question right away. One of the mistakes I see most frequently occurs when someone is partway through answering a question. They usually think they were answering it, but instead forgot the question itself and just ramble. Listen to the question, briefly pause, think about how you are going to answer it, and then answer. It will show you put thought into the question.
Try to smile while you are talking and use an upbeat tone of voice. First impressions are crucial even over the phone. Also, be sure you are the one to answer the phone and answer with your name for example “This is John Doe.”
Don’t talk poorly about a previous employer. It can come off negatively in many ways, even if your past employer wasn’t a great fit for you! When an employer is interviewing you, you don’t want to come across as confrontational. It will seem like you are scapegoating your employer for your own shortcomings, and/or likely to bad-mouth the company the first chance you get.
Be prepared to be yourself. You don’t want to promise something you are not to a future employer. Being yourself helps make sure both the company and yourself are going to be a good fit for each other.
Listen. Don’t spend the whole time talking, it is a two-person conversation. You might do more talking than whoever is interviewing, but be sure to listen and let them finish. When they are done talking be sure to pause to make sure their thought is finished and then answer the question/ comment back.