The goal of any job search is to get the job, right? But in order to get the job you’re going to spend a good bit of time interviewing. You’ve told yourself if you could just get in front of someone and they can see you, you know they’ll love you and will want to hire you. Only before you can get in front of someone you have to first pass the phone interview.
Normally your first contact with any company will be the phone interview with the recruiter. It should be your goal to help the recruiter understand why you’re the best qualified for the position. Because the goal of the phone interview for the recruiter is to narrow the pool of resumes they pass along to the hiring manager.
Take the phone interview serious or you’ll never get the opportunity to meet anyone face-to-face.
Here’s how to prepare:
Review the Job Description
Make sure you have a good understanding of the duties of the job. Then write down examples from you own experience that reflect what you’ve done that matches what the company is looking for a person to do.
Know Something About the Company
Even if you’re just reading from the company website, know what the company does. I can’t tell you how many times during a phone interview candidates would ask me to tell them about the company. Here’s a little secret, companies want to hire individuals who want to work for them. How you convey your enthusiasm for working at the company is by doing your homework and being able to answer the question, ‘what do you know about our company’ when asked.
Schedule the Call When You Can Focus
Don’t schedule a phone interview right before a meeting or right after a meeting. You’ll be distracted and you won’t be able to focus on the recruiter’s questions. Likewise, don’t schedule the call when you’re at home watching your child. Schedule the call when you can focus your attention on the questions you’re being asked so that you can provide well thought out responses.
If the recruiter wants to conduct a video interview make sure your system is working before the call. Recruiters normally have anywhere from 3 – 6 phone interviews scheduled during the day with a mixture of on-site interviews thrown in. The recruiter may not have the time to wait while you try to get the camera and/or audio working. The more time you take trying to get the system set up, the less time you’re going to have to communicate why you’re the best qualified.
If you succeed in passing the phone interview with the recruiter, you’ll most likely be scheduled for a phone interview with the hiring manager next. Again, take the time to prepare because the hiring manager will be deciding if you have the technical skills to fill the position and if they want to invite you on-site. You know for that face-to-face interview you’ve been wanting.
Take the time to prepare for any interview because with each interview you pass, you’re one step closer to getting the job!