The telephone interview is that stage in the recruitment process in which the recruiter contacts the selected candidates following the CV analysis.
It is an essential step and should be treated as seriously as the standard interview.
When searching for a job, it is important to be prepared for the telephone interview, as many employers start the recruitment process with a call. The purpose of this is to assess your skills in relation to the requirements of the position you have applied for. The recruiter will select only those candidates who will go to the next stage, which can be a test or even the standard interview.
This interview can be scheduled in advance, by email/phone, or it can be a spontaneous call to be held for a few good minutes.
Regardless of the situation, this first discussion can give you an advantage over other candidates, if you follow the following advice.
1. Do your research regarding the company. You can access the employer's website, social media page, or look for employee testimonials. Familiarize yourself with the industry, field of activity, products, and services offered. This will help you provide personalized answers and ask questions.
If you found out the interviewer's name, you can search his/her LinkedIn profile and start researching from there.
Prepare answers to any questions related to your studies, certifications, work experience, and other competencies identified in the job advertisement. Don't forget to prepare 2-3 questions to address at the end.
2. Open your CV and job description and make sure you have them in front of you at the time of the call.
Due to emotions, it is possible to forget certain details, this way you will have the necessary information at hand.
Take the time to match your qualifications with the job description so that you can tell why you are suitable for the position.
3. Find a quiet place in order to pay full attention to the discussion. Make sure you are in an area with a good cell phone signal, where it is quiet enough to hear clearly. Avoid places with background noise, the presence of other people, or anything that can distract you. If you are in a public place, try to go to the window or to a wall, and use headphones. Do not hesitate to request re-scheduling if the time is not right.
4. Speak professionally, be polite, speak clearly, answer concisely, and offer argued answers.
Listen carefully to the interlocutor and do not rush to answer until he/she has finished asking the question. You can find additional details to those in the job advertisement, regarding tasks, recruitment process, or benefits.
Smile! Although the recruiter cannot see you, you remain positive and smiling throughout the discussion, this is felt in the tone of voice.
5. Show enthusiasm and interest. One of the biggest mistakes that candidates make in the telephone interview is the lack of energy and motivation. Ask about different aspects of the job and express your real interest in the opportunity.
As the conversation comes to an end, be sure to find out what are the next steps in the recruitment process and when you will receive the feedback for this first stage.
End the discussion on a positive note, followed by a thank you email. It will help you stand out and strengthen the fact that you are really interested in this position.