Top tips on telephone interviews

Many employers are increasingly using telephone interviews as their first stage of the interview process so here are our top tips below to help you to achieve success.

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Research the employer thoroughly

Make sure you research the relevant facts and information about the employer, for example, the number of employees, services they offer, main competitors; where they are based (some may even ask you how you intend on travelling to their offices);and that you have fully read the job description.

Make notes and then you have a’cheat sheet’ with information and have some questions ready for the employer (about the company and role).

Understand the role and how your skills and experience matches

Have the job advert, your CV and covering letter in front of you, allowing you to make easy reference to them. If they ask you about dates of employment you will not have to hesitate to think.

Have relevant examples of situations that you feel applies to the skills required of the role. The great thing about telephone interviews is you can have this information in front of you (just don’t rustle too much!).

Be prepared to take notes

Have a pen and paper to take notes, and make sure you are in a quiet room with no distractions (i.e. children, pets or a television in the background). Have a glass of water ready as there is nothing worse than a dry throat, coughing and spluttering over the phone.

Dress for the occasion

Dressing smartly may feel odd but if you look professional you will feel professional. That comes across over the telephone.

Body language is still important

It is hard to gauge this over the telephone, but you can still make a good impression. Make sure you are sitting up properly and not sloughing or lying down as this can come across in your tone of voice. Make sure you smile down the phone as you can build some rapport to help the interviewer remember you.

Have a professional yet friendly telephone manner

Make sure you answer the telephone professionally, such as’Hello, speaking’ and smile at the time as it comes across. Building a friendly image leaves a lasting positive impression with the interviewer.

Take your time before answering

Make sure the interviewer has finished the question as there is nothing worse than interrupting. Do not be afraid to say ‘that is a good question, let me have a think about that’,thereby allowing you time to gather your thoughts instead of launching into an answer.

If you have not heard the question properly then ask the interviewer to repeat it, it is better to answer the right question than the wrong one.

End on a high note

Make sure you thank the interviewer for their time and wish them a good day/week/weekend. Politeness goes a long way.

This blog is written by the CV Guru is a leading service provider of professionally written CVs, LinkedIn Profiles, cover letters and they also provide specialist consultancy services.  The CV Guru has over 10 years’ experience in recruitment and employment related services covering a wealth of industries.  Having been a professional employment consultant for several years, the CV Guru has provided professional advice covering everything from professional CV/LinkedIn writing, effective job searching, interview skills and preparation, presentation techniques and general professional coaching.

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