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How to Ace Your Next Phone Interview

When employers face a wide pool of applicants, they sometimes use phone screenings to help cut costs and save time before they narrow their options and extend invitations for face-to-face interview sessions. A quick ten minute phone call can simplify a hiring decision by removing candidates from the pool if they don’t fit the basic requirements or can’t accept the best salary the company can offer. So when you receive a call from an employer or a written request for short phone interview, your goal will be simple: clear this hurdle and make it into the next round by presenting yourself using only your voice. Here are a few tips that can help you make this happen.

1. Be honest.

Save time, money and headaches for yourself and your employers by providing clear simple answers to simple questions. For example, if the employer wants to confirm your address and ask about your commuting distance, share this information. If the distance will be more than two hours, ask if the company can cover commuting costs or relocation expenses. If you have plans to move in order to accept the job, say so. Be clear and honest as you work toward a mutually acceptable arrangement.

2. Be direct.

Employers often use phone screenings to share the unpleasant aspects of a job before committing to a personal interview. You may hear statements like: “Based on your impressive resume, this job will probably very boring for you. How do you feel about repetitive tasks?” or “This is a small company, so we can’t offer much room for growth. Are you okay with that?” Think before you answer, and if you don’t like what you hear, say so. If you love what you hear, let your enthusiasm show.

3. Don’t mumble.

During a phone interview, your voice is your only tool and your only weapon. So use it properly. Smile as you speak (your listeners can tell). Keep your sentences slow, clear, and loud enough to be heard. Over-enunciate the syllables of each word.

4. Keep your documents in front of you.

If you receive enough warning before your call, make sure you gather your materials before the scheduled time and date. Have a copy of your resume and cover letter at hand, plus the job post if you have it. Open the company website on a screen in front of you before the call begins.

For personal tips that can help you ace your phone interview and step into the next round of the selection process, reach out to the staffing pros at Cordia.