Graduated? Now the work begins – literally. That’s if you can get through the interview. Nerves can strike during a telephone interview – think pre-exam nerves – and it’s important you know what to expect. You wouldn’t walk into an exam room without a study session, and it’s a productive mind-set to view telephone interviews the same. But have no fear – with our foolproof tips, you’ll fly through your next telephone interview like a pro!
Time to be a techie
First things first – if you’re using your mobile phone, make sure it’s charged. Cutting out halfway through because your battery died shows a lack of organisation, which is never a good thing.
Just because you think all the valuable action will be happening on the phone, don’t neglect the aids at your disposal to add a bit of polish to your telephone interview. It’s important your laptop is as switched on as you are.
It’s up to you how to best use your laptop, but our top tip is to have a browser window open on the company website you’re interviewing for. It’s almost guaranteed they will ask “so what do you know about what we do?” and you can approach that question with confidence as you’ve got your very own cheat sheet before you. Don’t just reel off all the awards they’ve won, where their headquarters are based or their website content verbatim – they will know this all already and will recognise you’re reading off a screen! Add a little flair to your delivery so you sound as natural as possible.
Get in your comfort zone
The benefit of a telephone interview is the freedom you have to choose the location. If you know of the telephone interview in advance, the optimum base is wherever you feel most relaxed and confident (and have strong phone signal!).
Whatever you do, don’t take the call outside – even if it’s in your own garden. You have limited control on what could happen in the environment around you, and that could negatively affect your performance. No one wants noisy neighbours or a loud dog disrupting you when you’re mid-flow!
A telephone interview can be sprung on you without much warning or prior knowledge. If you’re in a situation or environment that’s simply not appropriate, don’t be afraid to suggest a different time for the interview. It’ll show a level of confidence that most roles require and you’ll be demonstrating the skill first-hand.
Couldn’t ask for more
Before the interview officially begins, ask about the structure so you can plan accordingly. Make sure you’ve printed off a copy of your CV so it can be in front of you, as the person interviewing you will certainly ask questions based on the material you’ve sent across. This will make talking through your past experience and education incredibly easy.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions yourself during your interview. It’s a two-way street, and you need to know that the job is right for you as much as the interviewer needs to know you are right for the job.
You will be asked near the end of the interview whether you have any questions. Don’t fall into the trap that saying “no” is the right answer – it isn’t! This is the perfect opportunity to showcase your interest in the job and also the standards you have set yourself in your career. It’s not the time to ask about wages or hours, so avoid anything that could be controversial, but ask role-related questions or even what the interviewer enjoys the most about their job.