A phone interview is an important part of the hiring process. It weeds out the qualified applicants from the unqualified, narrowing the search for the perfect candidate. Here are a few tips on how you can ace that phone interview.
Use a landline over a mobile phone
If you still have a landline at home, use that for your phone interview. There’s less chance of being cut off or having dropped calls. The phone line will also be much clearer. If you don’t have a landline, you can use a mobile phone, but make sure to use the place that has the best reception in your house. Find the quietest area with the least amount of distraction. Turn off the TV or the radio and mute your gadgets.
Do your research
If it’s a scheduled phone interview, find out everything you can about the company and the job position beforehand. Find out more about your interviewer if you know his or her name. If it’s unscheduled, don’t panic. You can always tell the interviewer that you’re not available at the moment. Usually, the interviewer will ask which day and time will work for you, and they will call you back.
Have a copy of your resume ready for reference. Prepare a cheat sheet with the best answers you have come up with for the most frequently asked interview questions. Keep a notepad handy to scribble down important notes. Write down the questions that you want to ask your interviewer. It’s also good to keep a glass of water ready in case your throat gets dry.
Speak clearly and audibly
It’s all right to feel nervous and edgy before a phone interview. Calm your nerves; being nervous can cause you to rush and jumble your words. Take deep breaths. Quickly compose an answer in your head, and speak at an even and normal pace. Keep things conversational but professional, light, and interesting.
Be aware of your intonation. If you have a naturally low register, you can come off as sounding bored or uninterested over the phone. Try to sound more enthusiastic and animated. Don’t yell, but make sure that your interviewer can hear you clearly.
Don’t be vague with your answers
Don’t ramble, but don’t scrimp on answers, either. Keep the answers short but concise. Only cite your work experiences that are relevant to the job that you’re applying for. Give your interviewer a good idea of your work experience and your work ethics. Make sure your interviewer sees that you know enough about the company, the job, and that you are the best person for it.
Remember that your interviewer cannot see you. They can’t see if you’re being serious or making a joke. Try to avoid saying anything that could be misheard or misinterpreted. Be direct with your answers, and don’t take too much of their time. At the end of the interview, don’t forget to thank your interviewer.