A telephone interview usually takes place between an interviewer and the applicant at a pre-scheduled time and frequently lasts for between 30 – 45 minutes. A telephone interview is the second or third step of the job application process. The first step is sending in the actual online application, answering the questions, and attaching your CV.
If you get to the telephone interview stage, then a member of the recruitment team will contact you by email or phone to arrange a time for the telephone interview to take place. You’re able to change the time if required, so don’t feel you have to be available for the first time offered.
Make sure you prepare for a telephone interview in the same way you would for a face to face interview. Know your CV inside out, understand what the job, and what skills are needed, what the company does.
The format of a regular telephone interview is as follows:
- A telephone interview begins with the introduction and the interviewer showing that they will be recording what you are saying.
- During the telephone interview, the interviewer will only really have your CV at this stage, so the majority of the interview question will be from your resume.
- The interviewer may ask questions from your academic or employment sections on the CV. Either way, be prepared to answer questions about what you learned from each of your jobs and what you would do differently.
- During the telephone interview, the interviewer may then ask you why you have applied to X company or what has attracted you to the job?
- The telephone interview will usually finish with them asking if you have any questions for them, so ensure you have prepared a few probing questions about the role and the company.
Before you go on the telephone interview, make sure you know your CV inside out and be prepared to talk around your experiences and achievements matching them to the requirements of the job.
Top 5 tips for personal questions to ask the interviewer
1. Do you have any concerns about my ability to perform in the job? (if they answer yes, x, y, and z, you then have the opportunity to respond)
2. How can the new hire applicant add value to the company?
3. What does good look like for the successful candidate for this role?
4. What would you require a successful candidate to achieve in the initial days?
5. Which team would I be working in if I did succeed in getting the role?
Top 5 tips for questions about the company to ask the interviewer
1. What main challenges is the company facing at the moment?
2. What is the strategy for growth in (x) products are or (y) geographical area?
3. What is the companies’ social media strategy for engaging with customers?
4. How would you describe the workplace culture here?
5. Why do people usually leave the company?