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How to handle a phone interview like a pro

Today it’s more common to have a phone interview than an in-person one. This is because many jobs are remote and this is the only option and because companies want to recruit faster. A phone call will also allow the hiring manager to assess your online communication skills. You should always be ready for such interviews. Here’s a guide put together by Attic to help you handle this challenge successfully.

Before the call

Below are a few tips you can consider applying before your phone interview:

  • Prepare by going over the job posting again and writing down a list of the skills and qualifications you possess that match the position’s requirements. It’s a good idea to have this list at hand during the interview so you can refer back to it if you get nervous.
  • It’s also important to have your CV within reach. Make sure the document is in clear view so that it’ll be easy for you to read and answer the interview’s questions efficiently.
  • Have some water nearby in case your throat gets itchy or your mouth gets dry during the interview.
  • Remember to put your phone and any other devices on silent. The last thing you want is to hear the sound of incoming calls and notifications from various apps and text messages and get distracted. By having the sound turned off you’ll be able to focus on the interview and look professional.
  • The last thing you have to do before your interview is clear the room. Ensure there are no children or pets to distract you. Close the door to minimise any potential noise, as well.

During the call

Here are some aspects to keep in mind during the phone interview:

  • Show the employer how enthusiastic you are about the role through your voice.
  • Give short answers and stay focused throughout the process so as not to confuse yourself or the interviewer by saying too much and providing irrelevant information.
  • Always take notes during the interview since you’re going to need that information afterwards. You can’t actually remember everything you’ve just discussed once you’re finished.
  • Read the job description again and research the company well in order to come up with your own questions for the hiring manager regarding either the role or the organisation. You should do this before the interview and ask all your questions during the call. You can also think of new ones while on the phone.
  • Never interrupt the interviewer as it’s rude and unprofessional to do so.

Common questions asked during a phone interview

Here are some of the most common questions people get asked during phone interviews and what they mean:

  • Tell me about yourself – This question lets the interviewer get a first impression of you in order to consider your suitability for the role. The hiring manager wants to hear about your work experience, education, and qualifications, as well as what makes you a great fit for the position.
  • What do you like to do in your free time? – By asking this question, the employer wants to get an idea of your personality outside of work and they expect you to talk about your interests and hobbies while linking at least one of your passions to the job you’ve applied for.
  • Why did you apply for this job? – This question allows the recruiter to assess if you’re only looking for a role in general or if you’re actually seeking this particular position. The interviewer wants to make sure you understand the tasks and duties associated with the job and you genuinely wish to become part of the team.




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