12 Phone Interview Tips That Will Help You Get Hired

12 Phone Interview Tips That Will Help You Get Hired

During the job hunt, it is vital to be ready for a short phone interview at a moment’s notice. Hiring managers usually use phone interviews to discuss the details of the position, determine whether you are the right fit and see if you are really interested.

While some companies may call you out of the blue, most will let you schedule your phone interview in advance. Regardless, it is crucial to always answer the phone professionally, especially when receiving a call from an unknown number. Apart from that, ensure that your voicemail message is up to date and professional.

Phone interview tips

Because phone interviews are often unexpected, it is important to always be prepared. Make sure you do basic research about the company and the position. Also, be ready to answer basic phone interview questions. Much like an in-person interview, a phone interview also requires preparation. Thankfully, these last-minute phone interview tips will help you make the best impression and land your dream job.

Here are 12 tips to help you prepare for a phone interview:

1. Research company
2. Practice your answers
3. Get ready ahead of time
4. Prepare notes
5. Dress professionally
6. Show a positive attitude
7. Don’t talk too much
8. Try to stay calm
9. Speak clearly
10. Ask questions
11. What are the next steps
12. Send a thank-you email

1. Research company

Even if the interview doesn’t ask, you should still be prepared to show your knowledge of the company. Read through the company’s website to find out about their history, values, and recent projects. If available, also read through their social media and recent activity to get an idea of the company culture and position on the market. Sometimes, the interviewer might ask you what you know about the company. If he doesn’t, tie your knowledge into your responses.

2. Practice your answers

Much like with everything else, practice makes perfect. It will not only help you remember your answers to common questions but also reveal any verbal or pronunciation problems you may have. Prepare your answer to typical job interview questions. A good answer should be short and concise and should expand on the skills you mention in your resume. Also, record yourself or have a friend conduct a mock interview and record you. Then, listen to the recording and identify the main problems. These may be filler words, „Uhm “, „okays “, or verbal ticks. Focus on eliminating these so that you sound as calm and professional as possible.

3. Get ready ahead of time

Avoid scrambling to find your resume or a pen and notepad at the last minute. Being prepared will reduce stress and anxiety and help you focus on giving the best answers. Make sure your phone is charged and working, and test this ahead of time to avoid any delays.

4. Prepare notes

Having a notepad at hand is crucial for a phone interview. Firstly, you can write down the job requirements and how your qualifications fit the position. Also, you might need to write down things you want to ask during the interview so that you don’t forget. Finally, you will be able to jot down any important points or instructions the interviewer mentions.

5. Dress professionally

Dressing as if you were going to an in-person interview will make you feel put together and confident. Even though you are talking on the phone, make sure you are in a professional setup. Dress up, sit, or stand straight, and your mindset will immediately shift. Most importantly, avoid having phone interviews in your pajamas on the couch.

6. Show a positive attitude

Although the interview cannot see you, smiling makes a big difference in your phone interview. It will change the tone of your voice and project a positive attitude to the interviewer. Also, standing and even making hand gestures while on the phone will make your voice sound more energetic. Avoid nervous body language such as shuffling around or picking at your hands, as this will distract you from the interview.

7. Don’t talk too much

While engaging in small talk at the beginning of your interview is polite, you should know when to stop and listen. Your answers should be concise and straight to the point. Never talk over the interviewer and notice when they are trying to refocus the conversation. Most importantly, catch yourself when you start to ramble on and focus on being professional and direct.

8. Try to stay calm

Although this may be hard, do your best to relax and stay calm. During a phone interview, you don’t have to worry about your body language, but your voice can still give you away. Be sure to wait until the interviewer finishes speaking before answering. Also, pay attention to the questions and make sure you understand it before answering.

9. Speak clearly

One of the most important phone interview tips is to enunciate and speak slowly. Keeping your focus on a phone interview is much harder than in person. So, try to speak as clearly as possible and actively listen to the interviewer. It is better to take a few seconds before answering a question than to stutter and mumble.

10. Ask questions

Have questions prepared and be ready to answer when the interviewer asks for them. This will make you appear genuinely interested and enthusiastic about the opportunity. If you skip this step, you may come off as apathetic, which will put most hiring managers off.

Some questions you could ask include:

  • What does a typical day in the role look like?
  • What are the current priorities to focus on in this position?
  • How will you measure my success in this position?

To get inspiration on what questions to ask during a phone interview, read 23 Job Interview Questions to Ask an Interviewer.

11. What are the next steps

Express your interest in the position by asking the interviewer about the next steps at the end of your phone interview. The goal of a phone interview is usually to set up an in-person interview. But, some companies may be ready to offer you the position straight away. Knowing what to expect will allow you to prepare and succeed in your job hunt.

12. Send a thank-you email

At the end of the phone interview, thank the interviewer and ask for their email address. Then, send a thank-you email within 24 hours of the interview. In the email, thank the interviewer for their time and express your interest in the position. This is one of the most important phone interview tips, as 80% of hiring managers agree that receiving a thank-you note affects their final decision. If you are unsure about what to write, read Thank You Email After Interview: Examples, Dos, and Don’ts.

By following these simple phone interview tips, you will leave a great impression on the hiring manager and be one step closer to landing your dream job. It is important to remember that a phone interview is just as important as an in-person one. Remember to prepare and practice in advance and be confident during your interview.

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