How to nail a phone interview

Phone interviews are tricky because they have a way of lulling you into a false sense of comfort. Let’s face it, there’s nothing quite as relaxed as talking to a prospective employer from the comfort of your living room in your shorts and t-shirt. But if you want to improve your chances of landing the job, you’d do well to treat the phone interview like an in-person meeting. Here are some tips to help you nail a phone interview.

  • Clear your calendar. If you’ve got a busy schedule, allow for the interview to run at least an hour. In some cases this may be plenty of time – in others, just enough. While it’s not likely that you’ll ever find yourself wrapped up in a phone interview that lasts longer than an hour, better to be safe than sorry. Informing the person on the other end of the phone that you’ve got to “wrap it up” because you’ve got other urgent matters could hurt your chances of getting the job.
  • Find a quiet space. Eliminate as much noise around you as possible by closing yourself into your office or some other room where distractions will be at a minimum. If you live with someone, let them know about your scheduled interview so they won’t interrupt you. If you have pets, make sure to get them settled down before the interview. Barking dogs, loud traffic sounds, and other auditory racket may not only annoy the person you’re talking to, but it could also throw you off your game.
  • Be a verbal listener. Body language in a face-to-face interview can say a lot. But when you’re on the phone with a hiring manager, they have no way of reading you other than through your voice. Give frequent verbal confirmations that you’re following along, but don’t overdo it to the point of interrupting. Complete silence during a phone interview can be your undoing.
  • Be ready for anything. Always have your computer up and running in case you have to look something up online, or provide the employer with information about your past projects. As a safety, print out a hard copy of your resume so you can refer to it during conversation without having to worry about a power outage or some other electronic catastrophe derailing you. Keep a pen and paper handy to take notes so you can ask follow-up questions.

Phone interviews are becoming increasingly more common as job competition reaches an all-time high and hiring managers seek fast, effective methods of screening out unqualified applicants. They are also a highly effective method of choosing a select few to be invited in for a face-to-face interview. If you want to be one of those chosen few, put into practice some of the tips outlined above. Your employment status will thank you for it.

Check back frequently for more tips on acing interviews and improving your chances of getting a killer job. To learn more about how Artisan Talent can help you tap into lucrative freelance employment opportunities, contact us today.

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