How to shine during a telephone interview

We talked about how to answer the toughest interview questions and even got advice from the Toronto Academy of Acting to help with nerves and confidence, but it all skips one important step: the phone interview. If your resume has managed to grab the attention of a hiring manager, it’s just the first step toward your ultimate goal. The next step is to make an adequate impression during an informal telephone conversation.

“Before I meet a candidate, I always do a phone interview,” said Ginette Desforges, an associate member of Brio RH, a human resource management firm in Québec. “It’s an important step in the pre-screening process.”

During the telephone interview, evaluate the applicant’s availability, incentives and job expectations, previous experience and salary expectations. Desforges also pays attention to a candidate’s language skills, especially if they are important to the job. “This process can avoid wasting time for both employer and applicant,” he explains.

Have the right information to hand

The best way to ruin your chances when a potential employer calls you is to get only vague reminders of the job description and the organization. To avoid this, have a sheet of paper on hand that you list, for each job you are applying for:

  • Job title
  • Qualifications required (and how your experience relates to it)
  • Name of person to whom you sent your resume and contact information
  • The date you submitted on your resume
  • Some notes on the organization

Desforges recommends organizing this information in an Excel table or spreadsheet. Claudie Hugueney, a certified human resources specialist and career transition consultant with Phénix Conseils, prefers to use a traditional notebook, which can track job search applications and progress. He also suggests having a copy of your resume to hand, along with a list of your strengths and accomplishments. The aim is to be able to find all relevant information easily and quickly. As the saying goes: “whoever hesitates is lost”.

Make sure you are in the right place

If the recruiter is calling while you are shopping, looking after the kids, or otherwise busy, rearrange for a mutually convenient time. Make sure you thank them for the call and show enthusiasm for the work as you do it.

“The recruiter should not be angry,” Desforges said. “They will understand that jobseekers are not always available to talk. After all, it is better to have a focused conversation, without the risk of interruption. ”

Wear a smile

I think you can always hear a smile, “Desforges says. Claudie Hugueney agrees, and goes so far as to suggest that candidates have a mirror on hand during phone interviews. important; it can stand or sit upright and maintaining a positive expression on your face conveys confidence, even on the phone.

The two experts also agree on the importance of everyday wear as if you are going to work. “The clothes we wear influence our attitude and project an image, even on the phone,” insists Hugueney.

Be friendly, courteous and professional

It should go without saying, but it can often get lost in the form of casual conversation – you’re trying to impress enough to be invited for a face-to-face interview, so be polite and professional.

Hugueney believes that manual conversation is appropriate at the beginning and end of the conversation to make both parties comfortable. He recommends trying to contact the recruiter by keeping the conversation professional. “Finding a personal connection can make a difference,” he said. “It can make the recruiter feel like you might be suitable.”

At the end of the conversation, make sure you thank the recruiter for the call and reiterate your interest in the job. The last few seconds are also a great time to add a point you forgot to make earlier. “Don’t be reluctant to revisit part of the conversation or add an answer you’ve already given,” says Claudie Hugueney. The end of the phone call is a key moment to leave a lasting impression, he concludes. Make it count!

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