What’s Different about a Telephone Interview?

Interviews can be daunting

The selection process for any job can be lengthy and involve many steps.  These steps can include telephone interview, Skype interview, face to face interview, psychometric testing, role play, presentation to the interview board, completion of written assignment, skills testing, etc.  The approach to each element varies and there are some subtle differences between interviewing face to face and telephone interviews.

Visual Presence and Body Language

In a face to face situation, non-verbal communication plays a huge part in the success of a telephone interview scenario.  Non-verbal communication is subtle and ultimately vital to the interviewer’s ability to understand what you are trying to convey.  When this is absent, it is important to remember that you can only use language to explain your experience as your eye contact and gestures are invisible to the interviewer.

Tone and Pace of Voice

Interviewers understand more of what we say when we speak more slowly.  It is more effective to speak at a slower pace.  Conversely, speaking too fast during a telephone interview will reduce your chance of success at interview.  The tone of our voice becomes more apparent during a telephone conversation as the visual element is absent.  Pleasant and enthusiastic tones of voice will convey our genuine interest in a role.  It will also present positive energy to the interviewer which is often sought.

Phone Coverage

Most telephone interviews involve the use of a mobile phone.  Phone coverage can often be overlooked.  Before selecting a place to receive the call for the telephone interview, ensure there is adequate phone coverage.  Test the location in advance to be sure.  There is just one chance to make a first impression.  It is vital you create the best impression possible.  Along with that, it is essential that you use a fully charged mobile phone.  Low batteries will stress you as you begin the telephone interview.  The main goal is to be as calm as possible.  Do not allow low battery charge cause you unnecessary anxiety!

CVs Can Be Used

CVs are generally not used in a face to face interview situation.  You should you know your own career to date without referring to a piece of paper.  However, in a telephone interview situation, you have the benefit of not being seen.  If you have notes prepared from your interview research, it can be useful to have these with you for the telephone interview.  Do not rustle paper during the interview as it will not give a good impression.  Summarised notes or bullet points are often the best information to use if you wish to have any documentation with you.

Communication Becomes More Keen

During the telephone conversation, the content of your communication becomes key to your interview success.  Solely verbal communication increases the focus on what you are saying.  Be relevant, succinct and use adequate vocabulary to convey your experience to the interviewer.

If you have a telephone interview on the horizon and would like some advice, feel free to get in touch with us.  At Aspire Recruitment we believe in supporting your career aspirations and can provide you with further tips and advice.