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Mastering the art of the phone interview

Philip Shepherd

31st October 2019

Hiring managers are busy people, and so are the talented candidates they’re looking to hire. Phone interviews are becoming more and more commonplace, as they offer great flexibility for both parties, especially if the job candidate doesn’t live locally.


However, they can feel a little nerve-wracking, as they lack many of the formalities that we have come to expect from a job interview, and it’s harder to engage with your interviewer when you can’t physically see them.


Here are some top tips to make sure that you ace your next phone interview.


Dress for success


It may be tempting to wear something comfy for your phone interview, but instead of relaxing you, this might cause you to be too casual on the call.


By dressing as if you were going to a real interview, you put yourself in a professional mindset that will help you to portray yourself more confidently. It will also stop you from slouching during the interview, and this improved posture will allow you to better project your voice.


The process of getting ready and putting on your interview attire will also mentally prepare you for the interview.


Take the call in a quiet place


Choose a quiet, indoor location for the call and make sure that there are no interruptions. Not only can they distract you from the flow of the interview, they can also make it difficult for your interviewer to hear you properly.


If you’re taking the call at home, go to a separate room and ask not to be disturbed while you’re being interviewed. This includes keeping background noise to a minimum, which might be easier said than done if you have pets or young children!


Wear earphones


Using earphones can help you to cut out annoying background noise and may help you to better hear questions from the interviewer. This allows you to concentrate more and prevent those awkward “I’m sorry, what was that?” moments.


They also have the benefit of keeping your hands free, making it easier to take notes or use your hands to gesture in a natural way as you talk, which may help you to feel more comfortable and confident.


Have notes and take notes


Keep a laptop or notepad in front of you during your interview so you can write down any important information as you hear it.


Before the interview, write down a few questions that you’d like to ask about the role and the company, and have these in front of you during the call so you don’t forget.


You can also jot down a few prompts to remind you about things that you’d like to say, such as relevant projects or experience. Use this sparingly, however, and don’t write out and recite a whole pre-prepared script for each answer, as this will sound unnatural.


Remember to also keep a copy of your CV in front of you. You may wish to refer to it, or your interviewer may directly reference it, and it’s tricky to keep all that information in your head, especially if you’re nervous.


Are you looking for a job?


Take a look at our current vacancies or get in touch with us to discuss your requirements, and we’ll help to match you to your dream role.

Philip Shepherd

Philip Shepherd

Founder & CEO

Philip specialises in: Senior, Director and C-Level roles in Digital Marketing

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020 7183 7145