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Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Six tips to rocking a phone Interview

In the digital world we live in today, face-to-face interactions are becoming fewer and fewer. Especially in the current job market, more people are applying for jobs online and employers are looking for ways to cut costs. That is where phone interviews come in. A phone interview is an easy way for a job recruiter to screen many applicants in an efficient and cost effective manner.

In the last few months I’ve participated in several phone interviews. Unfortunately, the results of which have not allowed me to advance through to the next stage of interviews. After a little frustration, I decided to take action and figure out where my interview abilities were lacking. In this week’s blog I will explain how and individual can put their best-self forward during a phone interview.
  1. Use a quiet space:
    Try to eliminate any distractions for the interview. This will make it easy to focus entirely on the interviewer’s questions and giving a proper response.
  2. Take your time:
    Just like a normal interview, there is no rush to answering an interviewer’s questions. Listen to the question, take a moment to process, and then articulate a concise response.
  3. Use a reliable phone line:
    If using a cell phone, make sure the battery is well charged and working well. When possible, use a landline as they will provide the best sound quality on either end of the line.
  4. Have your resume close by:
    Know your key messages so you can convey them to the interviewer. Keep the position description and resume within reaching distance while you are on the phone. Refer to both as much as needed.
  5. Take notes for the 2nd interview:
    These notes will act and a memory aid for the possibility another interview. Write down questions posed to the interviewer to avoid asking them again in the second interview. Take note of key messages and attributes the interviewer repeats multiple times.
  6. Get in front of the mirror:
    What better way to convey confidence than to look and feel confident? Stand in front of the mirror while giving responses. The ability to visualize this confidence will help convey it in interviewee’s voice.

Acing a phone interview takes practice, but keep at it. Don’t forget, a phone interview is just like a regular interview. Always follow up with a handwritten note or email thanking the interviewer for their time. Express interest in the opportunity and relate individual skills to the position. For some additional interview and job hunting tips visit

Ellie Humphrey
University of Minnesota
Jour 3279
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