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How To Be Successful In A Telephone Interview

You will mostly come across a telephone interview if you are looking for work and this is often the first stage after you submit your CV / application. This may be with a recruitment agency (such as Evolution Recruit) or your new potential line-manager. This is quite an informal chat; the idea is to go through your CV and give you a chance to talk about your work experience and interests.

Preparation

You need to treat the telephone interview how you would treat a face-to-face interview. Have a copy of your CV, the job description and a pen and paper always ready on the go. An interview is not memory game, so have as much as you need in front of you at all times. You could make some little notes of the most important things you want to say, this can guide you throughout the interview.

Find a quiet place where you know you won’t be bothered and have a glass of water ready, so you don’t get a dry throat! It’s important for you to be as professional as possible, without worrying about your surroundings.

The Short Summary

There’s one thing you can do, which is suitable across interview setups, is by preparing a short introduction. Most commonly the first question is ‘tell me about yourself?’ so what you need to do is prepare 3 to 4 sentences about the current position you’re in. This can be your present job responsibilities, educational past and previous experience all in one simple paragraph.

Capability Questions

This technique is mainly used by lots of recruiters when there are lots of candidates who have comparable practical qualifications. A common use is on graduate schemes, but the method is widely used. The key here is to answer in the STAR format.

Situation – Where were you when this happened?

Task – What were you essentially doing?

Action – How did you achieve what you desired to do?

Result – Review the end result

By using this simple guide, you will sound like an expert and concise, giving the interviewer everything that they need in the answer.

Things to Evade

There are some things that you need to avoid in an interview and that is simply saying too much and ‘waffling’ on, both you and the interviewer will find this unnecessary. Any gaps in the call are perfectly normal, both of you may be writing something down. The other important thing is to keep the discussion professional. Many people make the common mistake of being too informal as if they are speaking to a friend. You need to keep in your mind that it is still a formal situation and that you need to stay professional.

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