Alpha Bits

Information, insights and advice regarding today’s IT and pharmaceutical recruitment landscape. 

Be Prepared – The Phone Interview

Phone interviews are an increasingly common part of the hiring process. The approach is contactless, which companies view as beneficial in the current climate. Additionally, when it comes to first-round cuts, it can be a great way to separate the standout candidates from the mediocre ones, ensuring that only the best are invited to participate in a more in-depth interview.  

While phone interviews may seem more casual, it’s essential to treat it like a traditional one. Additionally, it would be best if you were prepared for the challenges that come with the format, such as not being able to read body language to get clues about how you’re being received. If you want to make sure you’re ready for your phone interview, here are some tips that can help.  

Pick a Quiet Space  

Background noise can make you hard to understand. Ideally, you want to be able to take the call while you’re in a room that you can fully control and can keep closed off from others. This is especially true if you are interviewing from home, and other members of the household may be moving about during that time.  

Pets also need to be kept away during your interview. While a cat meowing in the background may not seem like a big deal to you, it could be distracting to the hiring manager on the other side of the call.  

Use the Right Phone and Equipment  

Poor call quality can also harm your chances of landing the job. If you are using a cell phone for your interview, make sure you have great reception where you plan to take the call. Additionally, you may want to use headphones and a microphone, preferably noise-canceling options, to be clearly heard and hear clearly.  

If you have one available, you may prefer to use a landline or a VoIP softphone on your computer. This approach eliminates having to worry about signal strength. Plus, with the VoIP approach, you can use a robust headset or microphone, ensuring you come through crystal clear.  

Be Ready for the Interview Basics  

Since a phone interview is usually part of a first-stage screening process, you’re more likely to face common interview questions over highly complex ones. For example, the hiring manager may lead off by asking you to summarize your work history, discuss why you are looking for a new opportunity, describe your strengths and weaknesses, and other classics.  

Ideally, you want to be ready for these widely used questions, as you’ll face at least a few. Review common interview questions and craft concise responses to each one, ensuring you can deliver when the need arises.  

Review the Job Description  

Since you want your interview answers to be relevant, make sure to review the job description. It will include critical details like the must-have skills and nice-to-have traits the hiring manager wants to find.  

By reviewing the job ad, you can incorporate those details into the answers you’ll practice. Plus, you can think of relevant accomplishments that showcase your abilities in those areas, allowing you to have a few ready and waiting to be shared.  

Ultimately, a phone interview isn’t very different from an in-person one. By using the tips above, you can make sure you are ready to put your best foot forward, increasing the odds you’ll advance to the next round or secure an offer.  

Further Your Career Today 

If you’d like to learn more about how to have a successful interview, the staff at Alpha Consulting can help. Contact us today.