Phone Screen Interviewing Tips


While I was looking for employment after being laid off, I spent a lot of time on phone screening interviews.  The phone screen is officially the first step of the interviewing process, and while it’s not a face to face interview, it’s important to take it seriously.  After all, it’s the stepping stone to getting that second interview.  Here are some tips that I learned as I continued to refine my interview skills.

  • Treat it just like an in person interview.
  • Use a land line telephone.  If you must use a mobile device, make sure it is fully charged and in an area with good reception.  If using a cordless phone, make sure it is fully charged as well.
  • Don’t use the speaker phone feature.
  • Eliminate all background noise (no TV, music, rowdy kids, barking dogs, etc.).
  • Sometimes the phone interview may be with more than one person on the other line.
  • Have your resume and other supporting documents organized and within reach.
  • Dress professionally.  By dressing up and looking the part, you will take the call more seriously.
  • Have a warm glass of water within reach.  The last thing you want to do is choke when you’re taking a sip of cold or hot water.
  • Sit upright or stand while speaking on the phone, don’t slouch.
  • Go to the bathroom before the phone screening to avoid interruptions or have a bucket handy (just kidding).

Good luck!

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