Making that telephone interview work for you

Phone interviews are essentially phone screening and the purpose is to quickly screen and shortlist job applicants.
It is critical to make a good impression at this stage as applicant vetting will be to deliver a manageable shortlist for face-to-face interviews.  In our experience, only 10 to 15 percent of applicants selected for phone screening go through to the next level.
The following advice will help prepare you to deliver your A game.
The employer
Knowledge of the company shows that you are serious about the job and prepared to invest time in doing research. 
This knowledge may well give you an edge if you are asked your thoughts on the service or product offering.
Stand out as the applicant that knew the company and product and had already put thought into it.
Your career
If you are asked about your experience – which is highly likely – you want to be able to deliver concise and positive answers and explanations.  Your delivery is limited to only what you can express with your voice so you want to be able to communicate clearly and make an impact. 
By preparing a summary of your past career, it will all be fresh in your mind and enable you to easily refer to skills and experience.
Skills relevance
Employers and recruiters will be looking to match your experience and skills with the role.  Align these in advance so that you can discuss your strengths and abilities relevant to the job you are applying for.
Work contribution
What will you bring to the job?  As cliched as this sounds, every business wants to develop and to grow and to do that they need staff who bring value to their role.
The best way to express this is to highlight those successes you have enjoyed in past roles – preferably recent past roles. 
Ask questions
Make a point of asking questions.  Take the time while researching the company, to make a list of questions about the job.
This exercise gets you thinking in more depth about the job and your suitability for it.  Also, consider the logistics of your career such as your expectations regarding salary and company benefits, commute and even notice period.
Asking questions about the role itself again confirms to the employer that you have thought about the job in some detail – further evidence you are serious about the position and prepared to put a little extra into what you do.
The call
Prepare for the call by ensuring your phone is charged and you are in an area with good reception.
Ideally, you should be able to talk clearly without worrying about disturbing anybody and at the same time restrict possible background noise that might interfere with how you are heard by the caller.
Set aside a quiet location where you can relax a few minutes before the call and where you will not be disturbed.  Have notes ready if necessary as well as your CV and the job description.
Setting a nice location aside is a big advantage for you and with the preparation discussed above, you can really reach out and connect with the interviewer.  Your voice and how you speak is what you use to do this.  By speaking at a measured pace and with a good pitch, your listener will be able to hear you clearly and you will come across as confident.
For helpful advice on finding a new job, see C&D’s library of advice for job seekers – Job Seeker Resources.
See more advice for job seekers here...
If you found this advice useful or have other queries about job seeking and how to land your ideal job, please email or call us on Tel. +44 (0) 1793 488057.
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