More and companies are using phone interviews to select candidates, so it is a good idea to be ready for when the event happens. A lot of companies and recruiters use it for preliminary screening so it is vital that you put your best foot forward in order to get to the next stage.
It is important to remember, a phone interview is still an interview and that similar questions can be asked. Here are some ideas for you to consider on how you can prepare yourself and be the best version of you when the time comes.
If you haven’t had a telephone interview before, it might be a good idea to practice beforehand. Record yourself while answering some interview questions, you will learn a lot about your tone, speed and verbal tics you might have, for example avoid “am”, “um”, “like” and “so” in the conversation.
Know your CV inside out! Be ready for the questions they might ask.
Research the company and be ready to answer why you would be a good fit.
2.Set the scene
It is important that you have a quiet space to yourself without distractions. No background noise such as children, pets, TV or radio.
Is there good phone reception where you are? If not, use a landline.
Be up, dressed and ready, it will help put you in the right frame of mind, (it might be hard to focus on a formal interview when you are wearing your fluffy pyjamas!!)
It would be good to have a pen and paper beside you so that you can take notes of questions asked or points made.
Keep your CV ready at hand so that you can refer to it. Have a few key points written down of the topics that you might like to say during the interview, such as strengths and weaknesses, achievements, questions you might like to ask. Don’t have too many papers though as you don’t want to be shuffling the papers.
3.During the Interview
Always answer the phone yourself in a professional manner.
Make sure that your tone of voice is cheery and positive. Smiling helps :0) Your voice sounds more positive and welcoming when smiling. Standing up can also help as it adds energy to your voice.
Do not chew gum, smoke, eat or drink.
Use the person’s title, such as Ms Kelly, Mr O’Brien, unless they suggest differently. (Write their name down immediately to ensure you don’t forget it during the interview!!)
Do not interrupt the interviewer while they are speaking; listen carefully to what they are asking, take notes if you think it will help you keep your train of thought, jot down any points that you would like to bring up later. Take your time in answering questions, and try to be concise yet thorough with your answers.
4.Check your stress levels
Some people are complete naturals at phone interviews, others will not like them. Interviews can be nerve wrecking at the best of times so it is important to check in with your stress levels and how your body is reacting to it.
Sip water to prevent dry mouth, Don’t forget to breathe while you are answering the questions, stand up to ensure that you keep breathing and moving, ensuring that your breath doesn’t become shallow and your voice become light over the phone.
Go for a walk or stretch if you can before the interview to release any built up anxiety you may have.
Send the interviewer an email later in the day to thank them for the opportunity of the interview and express your continued interest in the job.
Review your notes, jot down the questions you were asked and keep for future interviews.
Get out of the house and go for a walk.
Best of luck with your interview, once you follow these tips you will be one step closer to your dream job!
Anna Healy has been a Career Coach for the past 11 years in West Cork.
You can contact her directly here