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Tips for Getting Hired During a Phone Interview

Tips for Getting Hired During a Phone Interview
© Provided by Ladders

From: Ladders

Employers may use a variety of methods to find the ideal candidate to hire. Sometimes a phone interview helps them streamline the process by narrowing down the candidate pool. As a prospective candidate, you need to be prepared in case you are asked to participate in one.

It’s helpful to be prepared for a phone interview, even if there is only the potential of a job interview on the horizon. If you understand all there is to know about this type of interview; you can be ready to impress should you suddenly be invited. The following phone interview tips will help.

Purpose of a phone interview

Phone interviews are a great tool for employers. Their purpose is to let employers know if they want to proceed to the next step with a candidate. This is particularly essential for companies that get hundreds or even thousands of applications for a job posting. In these cases, the company may use an Application Tracking System (ATS) software to weed out many applicants.

The next step is to conduct a phone interview to assess whether they will invite the person to an in-person interview. These interviews are relatively simple for the interviewer and don’t expend as many resources.

What to expect during your phone interview

Sometimes you will have a scheduled phone interview. The hiring manager may contact you by phone or email and let you know the date and time of the interview. This is ideal because it allows you time to prepare. You may even be given a general timeframe for how long the interview will last.

Other times, the HR person may surprise you with a call, and you’ll have to be ready to roll with a series of questions on the spot.

The main format of a phone interview is just like an in-person interview, except you will be selling your expertise and experience from a distance. Phone interviews are generally shorter in duration, and you don’t have to dress up for them.

However, be sure to clarify with the hiring manager that you have a phone interview and not a video phone interview — those would be completely different.

Read More: 6 Signs Of A Toxic Job You Can Spot During Your Interview

Preparing for a phone interview

You can take several steps when preparing for a phone interview. They are as follows:

Know about the company

Ensure you know something about the company. Research what they do if you don’t already know, and find out more about the company culture, mission, and goals. This can help you formulate answers that better match the company vibe.

Have your notes handy

Keep notes close by that you can refer to during the interview process. These can be notes about the following:

Information about the company (as referenced above)
Personal soft skills you possess
Job qualifications that fit the job


Match your skills with the job

If you have the job description to refer to, review the qualifications and skills necessary to do the job. Then look at your resume and job skills and link them to the job description. This lets the employer know that you can fulfill the listed position.

Practice in advance

As awkward as it may sound (or feel), take time to practice your answers in advance. Obviously, you won’t know the questions, but you can search online for practice interview questions or make up some of your own. If you’ve been in interviews before, think about questions you were asked then – particularly anything that took you by surprise. At the very least, practice discussing how your skills and/or personal traits are a good match for the job.

Tips for a successful phone interview

You can make or break a phone interview by some of the things you do — or don’t do. Remember that you’ve made it past the preliminary stage and got to the phone interview. However, you want to make it to an in-person interview. You still have another hurdle to overcome before getting a face-to-face interview with the hiring manager. The following tips will help you get there.

Answer the phone promptly

Don’t let the phone ring off the hook. It will appear like you weren’t “on time,” or you don’t care too much about the interview. Pick up after one or two rings. Also, you must be the one who answers the phone and not someone else.

Make sure there are no distractions

Do your phone interview in a quiet room. Ensure no clutter or distractions are lying around the room because clutter makes it more difficult to concentrate. Know your space and be comfortable in it.

Stop interruptions before they happen

You can help prevent interruptions, which are major disruptions. Some ways to do this are to make sure your phone is on silent, put a “do not disturb” note on your door, and, if you have a pet or child, have someone watch them for you during the interview.

Address the interviewer properly

Make sure you address the person interviewing you with Mr. or Mrs. as a form of respect. Never use just a first name unless you are specifically told to do so.

Read More: Ask These 4 Questions To Dodge Potential Burnout in a Job

Follow the lead during the interview

While participating in the interview, be careful to let the interviewer lead the conversation. Don’t dominate the conversation in any way. If the person starts with a little bit of small talk, in the beginning, be brief in responding.

Answer the questions carefully

Be sure you listen to the questions that are asked so that you can answer carefully and precisely. Sometimes, it requires more concentration when interviewing over the phone. Wait until the speaker has completed talking, so you don’t miss any part of the question. Also, you don’t want to interrupt before they are done speaking.

Take your time… but not theirs

There is no need to rush with your answers. It’s appropriate to take a few seconds to collect your thoughts or look at your notes before answering. Of course, you don’t want to be silent for too long, but taking your time creates value on both sides. Conversely, you should practice keeping your answers clear and concise. Nervous people can ramble and over explain, so practice is key.

Be courteous

Be polite on the phone. As noted already, wait your turn to talk and use the proper title when addressing the person. Thank the interviewer for the opportunity to interview you. Also, don’t forget about basic things like not eating, chewing gum, or sucking candy while on the phone. It is appropriate to take a sip of water if your mouth gets dry but do so discreetly so that the sound isn’t magnified on the other end.

Today is the day! Final thoughts

Today is the day of the interview. Take a deep breath, gather your notes and thoughts, and prepare your “quiet” room for the interview. You should be in the room, reviewing your notes, five or 10 minutes before the phone rings. Then sit back, relax, and give your best phone interview.

See more at Ladders




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Career Magazine: Tips for Getting Hired During a Phone Interview
Tips for Getting Hired During a Phone Interview
Employers may use a variety of methods to find the ideal candidate to hire.
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