Effectively show your calibre to ace critical telephonic interview

A lot of graduate recruiters do their first interview over phone. Telephone interview is a devise for recruiter to measure whether you are serious for the job or not and make a decision whether or not to take you ahead through application process. Questions are more probably to focus on general competences and skill. Aim is to try to illustrate enthusiasm and commitment in short conversation.


Positive thing about phone interviews is that they are rapid and more suitable for both you and interviewer than arranging initial meeting face-to-face. If job you are applying for relies as much on personality or telephone abilities as on qualifications and experience, recruiter will be mainly interested in how you come across. Though, phone interviews can be tricky as neither party can see other, so common visual clues are absent.

Be equipped

It is normal to be anxious before telephone interview, but it will actually help if you know you have done groundwork. Ensure you discover as much as you can about recruiter. Read job description cautiously and think about how you match selection criteria. Note down any questions you may like to enquire, also plan answers to those questions you believe are probable to come up – specially questions like ‘Tell me about yourself’ and ‘What interests you in job?

Practise before interview

As we all heard practice makes perfect. Any knowledge you have of using phone in professional context will assist, for instance temporary telesales job, research during work experience or voluntary fundraising. If you sense you require more experience to make confidence, ask friend, a relative or someone at the careers service to assist. They will be able to provide you feedback on how you come across by phone.

You could also trace yourself so that you can take note and recognize any problems, like speaking too quietly or quickly.

Control your environment

Turn off television. Let your housemates make out what is going on and request them to leave room and provide you some peace and quiet. Use speakerphone only if you are sure there will be no disruption and you are at ease with this mode of using phone. You can sit next to table or desk with notes, copy of the application or CV, interview details and pen and paper to hand. Place them into good order so that you can effortlessly reach for information you want to refer to.

Stay calm

Before you dial, take couple of deep breaths and smile. It will demonstrate in your voice. You will forget about nerves once you are focused on interview. Speak clearly and at reasonable pace. If you are asked difficult question, take time to consider you can forever say something such as, 'Let me just think on that for moment,' to acquire time.

Be professional


Respond the phone professionally: Greet him/her' must do trick. Talk to your interviewer as Miss, Mrs or Mr unless invited to use his or her first name. Be lively and excited, but respectful. Do not be over familiar and do not start chatting as if you were talking to friend. Keep in mind to listen cautiously and try to be concise. It is improbable that you will need to ring in to interview, but if you are ringing in, reflect beforehand what you will speak so that you do not mess up it

Remember this is only initial round

Do enquire questions at end, but this is not time for conversation about training, salary and start dates. You may discover that telephone interviewer is working on behalf of employer to do early screen of applicants and can’t reply thorough questions about job and company. If you progress to next stage, you will have possibility to assess company in more depth.

Take notes


If you can, write down notes during interview, or note down what you can keep in mind about questions and answers right away afterwards, as it is still fresh. It will be useful record to refer to when you go through to next stage.

In telephone interview turn off:

plenty of background noise: cafes are not at all good place to take interview call.

Chewing and slurping: have glass of water close by just in case mouth goes dried out mid call, but do not eat or drink proper during taking part in telephone interview.

Taking other calls or responding to texts: switch off mobile if you are using landline; switch off landline if you are using your mobile. or go to another room.

Being too laid back, literally: Do not slump on couch; sit up straight, as it will assist you sense and sound more confident and alert. Some people discover taking calls standing up right away gives energy to conversation.

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