Phone interviews are a common first step of the hiring process. They are used to screen candidates and narrow down the talent pool to who will be invited for in-person interviews. You typically have just two assets - your voice and your preparation! Here are 5 tips to help you ace your next phone interview.
1. Be on time
Some folks are under the impression that a phone interview does not need to be as prompt as an in-person meeting. It is far easier to jump on a call than to meet in person, so there is no reason to not be punctual.
2. Keep your tone of voice enthusiastic
Recruiters talk to dozens of prospects every day. The things we look for are good communication which is the primary component for a successful phone screen. It’s important to not only express interest with statements but to also “sound” like you are excited about the position.
3. Ask questions
Don’t save your questions for an in-person interview. Have (at the very least) some basic preliminary questions prepared so that both parties can assess whether moving forward is of interest.
4. Show your personality
Crack a few jokes, talk about something interesting that happened this week at work, inquire about where the interviewer lives, for example. “Ice breakers” are a good way for the recruiter to get a sense of your personality. This will also set you apart from the crowd by emphasizing a few things both parties have in common.
5. Be direct and to the point
Always keep responses clear and concise. Try to avoid “rambling” on in too much detail during phone interviews. You have both set aside a short amount of time for a screen so it is all about the quality (not the quantity) of what is taken from the conversation.