As national Recruiter, I recruit candidates for positions through the UK, which means that my first step in gauging whether a candidate is right for my position is to arrange a telephone interview with them. Just like the face to face interview, to be successful in a telephone interview requires preparation. Here are a few of my best tips for how to succeed in a telephone interview:
Know who you’ll be talking to
This is basic but essential, you must know the interviewer’s name and job title. Don’t fall at the first hurdle!
Prepare your answers
To be comfortable right from the start of the interview, you may want to jot down a few notes to assist you with your answers. Avoid writing sentences,as you don’t want your answers to sound scripted, but we all know how easy it is to forget things when you’re nervous, so it is useful to have a few bullet points to boost your memory and make sure you don’t forget to mention any important figures.
All sales specialists will tell you that you can tell when someone is smiling over the phone as it alters the way they sound. The voice reveals many things about you without you even realising. Even though the interviewer can’t see you, make sure you smile when giving your answers as it will make you sound much more confident and passionate about what you are saying.
Prepare your documents
Make sure you have all of your documents in front of you before you start. You don’t want to have to stop the interview so you can run off and find your CV. Prepare your CV, your job application (if you have sent one), advert or job spec for the role and your research notes about the company. Do not forget to bring your calendar and a pen for scheduling appointments, but also a notepad to write notes during the telephone interview.
Find a quiet area
Finally, make sure you are already in a quiet room ready for when the interviewer calls. Either find a quiet meeting room or if you are at home make sure you are away from any children or pets which could make background noise.
One last thing: do not chew gum to relax!