While telephone interviews do not allow you to visit and get a hands-on feel for the company, they do have certain advantages: They tend to be less stressful than in-person interviews, you can wear whatever you like, and you don’t have to worry about forgetting a comb or a breath mint.
People often resort to telephone interviews when the distance between employer and candidate is too great. In addition, many companies request telephone interviews to conduct preliminary evaluations in order to create a pool of applicants, or to narrow a pool to a few final candidates.
If you can afford to fly out to an interview – and you believe you are a serious candidate for the job – make the effort. Doing so indicates enthusiasm and confidence in your abilities. If you cannot afford the trip, make that clear to the interviewer.
Tips for Before the Interview
- Research the company, the position and the employer as carefully as possible.
- Next to your telephone, neatly arrange your current resume, a list of answers to key questions, a list of points, skills and achievements that you want to mention, your calendar, your company research notes, notepad, pen, calculator.
During the Interview
- Try to be the one placing the call so you won’t have to sit by the phone feeling nervous. If an interviewer calls at an unscheduled time, ask if you can call back. Don’t forgo the opportunity to prepare.
- Speak clearly and audibly.
- Use correct grammar and complete sentences. Remember to speak with warmth and enthusiasm, just as you would in a face-to-face interview.
- Take notes to prepare you for the next interview.
- If the interviewer puts you on hold, jot down the topic you had been discussing, so you can pick up where you left off.
- Remember to sell yourself and your skills, just as you would face-to-face.
After the Interview
- Don’t forget to send a thank-you note!
Despite the fact that you may conduct a telephone interview in your bathrobe and slippers, you should nonetheless treat the experience as seriously and prepare as you would an in-person interview. View this conversation as an opportunity to win a face-to-face interview.