The job search landscape has changed drastically over the last several months. Even with businesses reopening and employees returning to work, the way things used to work still hasn’t quite returned yet. Some changes may even be permanent. One of those changes is in the way job seekers interact with prospective employers. The phone interview used to be a good way for employers to gauge an applicant’s fit with their company. Now, however, phone interviews have begun replacing conventional interviews altogether. In this time when zero-contact hiring is growing in demand, you should prepare yourself to face these new challenges. Here is a list of things you can do to help you make a good impression in your phone interviews.
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Research the Company
A good rule of thumb for any kind of interview, not just a phone interview, is researching the company. Unlike conventional interviews, however, it can be even more beneficial. During your phone interview, you can keep a window open on your computer to help you out. This may be either a Google listing, Indeed page, or the company’s website. You can use this research to help fine-tune your responses to speak any unique objectives the company has.
Also, don’t forget to check out reviews of the company on Google or Yelp. They may help you make a final decision.
Keep Your Notes Readily Available
You might be tempted to go into your phone interview without notes. It may give your responses a sense of free form and honesty. However, if you trip up, you may never recover. In phone interviews, you can keep notes available right next to you for reference. If you get stuck on something, check your notes. You may have predicted it and wrote down something useful to get yourself back on the right track.
Check Your Environment
Is your current situation peaceful and quiet? If not, you should make sure you take your phone interview away from distractions, loud noises, interruptions, and things that make you uncomfortable. Your interviewer may be able to hear loud noises easily over the phone. Not only that, they will be able to pick up when you’ve become distracted or uncomfortable. For the best phone interview environment, a comfortable, quiet place by yourself with everything you need from above is ideal.
Check Your Tone
Phone interviews are tough to express emotions through. Unlike conventional interviews, the interviewer can’t see your face or body language. Your tone of voice is the only way you can convey your emotions to the other person. Unfortunately, if you have a low natural tone of voice, or you don’t naturally sound enthusiastic, that may come across negatively to the interviewer. Make sure you practice with a friend or family member beforehand. Practice trying out and exaggerating different tones of voice to get a better feel for what you might need.
Make Plenty of Time For It
Don’t make any assumptions about how long the phone interview might take. Phone interviews typically take less than an hour, but you should never budget your time so that the phone interview may remotely conflict with something else. You should make sure you have plenty of time to prepare before the call as well as the call itself. Add in 15-30 minutes of extra time on top of that to make sure there is room for additional conversation afterwards. You never know what might happen!