How to prepare for a phone interview
Interviews are exciting, no matter the form they take. Phone interviews require some different skills to prepare for as the interviewer will not be seeing you face to face. Phone interviews are utilised as an initial screening to narrow down candidates before a face to face interview. They are also utilised to speak with candidates that are out of town. Below you will find several tips for preparing for your next phone interview.
1. Choose a Good Location
You can control your own environment during a phone interview. Choose a time and a location free of distractions for at least thirty minutes. Be in a quiet room at your home and ensure you have a clear connection. Eliminate distractions by not allowing other people or pets in the room and ensure there is no loud music or noise in the background. Make sure your phone is fully charged and decline any incoming calls when approaching the time of the call. Turn off call waiting so you are not interrupted during the call.
2. Prepare a Cheat Sheet
Have all of your points laid out in front of you during your phone interview. Ensure that you have a detailed list of your career history in case the interviewer asks you to recap the history. You could utilise your resume for this as well. Write down accomplishments that you do not want to forget to mention during the interview. Research the role and write down three to four questions to bring up at the end of the interview. Make sure you do not sound like you are reading though!
3. Get Yourself Ready
A phone interview is just as serious as a face to face interview. With this in mind, treat it as seriously as you would a face to face interview. Ensure that you change out of your pyjamas, shower and get yourself ready. The interviewer deserves respect from you. Ensure that you are ready to go by the time the phone rings. Physically and mentally prepare yourself with professional clothing. This will make you more alert and more confident during the interview.
4. Speak Slowly
It is difficult to judge someone’s tone over the phone. With this in mind, it will be difficult for the interviewer to judge your tone over the phone. Never speak until the interviewer finished his or her question. Write down ideas that pop in your head to bring up when you have opportunity. Give yourself time to answer by breathing and talking in a slow and calming way. Try to prevent awkward silence and interjections such as “like” or “um.”
5. Prepare Questions
It is important to learn if the position will be a good fit for you, your needs and your personality. It is also important to learn if you have skills that can benefit the company. Use the conversation to ask questions rather than saving all of your questions for the end of the interview. Give the interviewer time to tell all about themselves and about the company. This will assist you in learning more about the role and who you will be working for.
6. Confirm Next Steps at the End of the Interview
Closing the phone interview is one of the most difficult parts. Be sure you ask the interviewer all information you need to know about next steps and about the role. Ask questions about the next step in the interviewing process, the timeline and contact information. Make sure you end the call as well to ensure the interviewer does not hear background noises or future conversations.
Following these tips will offer you a way to perfect your next phone interview. Prepare wisely and put just as much effort into a phone interview as you would a face to face interview. You are guaranteed a follow up if you follow these steps and are prepared.