Conduct a Productive Phone Interview
Phone interviews can be a challenge. Without seeing the person face to face, it can be difficult to get a good grasp on whether or not they might be a good fit for your team. In a previous post, I shared some tips for powering through a pile of resumes. Today let’s talk about how to conduct a phone interview that quickly eliminates unqualified candidates.
1. Keep Your Interview Short & Sweet
Phone interviews should last no more than 20 minutes, which means that you will be able to speak to three candidates per hour. If you use a calendar scheduling app like YouCanBook.me your applicants can schedule themselves on your calendar, saving you the time and hassle of scheduling them yourself.
2. Have a Plan Before You Start
Phone interviews should follow a script, and you should feel prepared when you hop on the line. Create a list of 10 to 12 questions that are important to you and ask the same questions to each applicant.
3. Discuss Logistics First
There’s no point in staying on the phone with someone who doesn’t meet the basic requirements of the job, so ask questions about location, salary expectations, ability to work nights and/or weekends, or license or education requirements first. If they don’t meet your requirements, kindly thank them for their time and move on.
4. Listen Carefully to Your Interviewee
Phone interviews are about verifying qualifications, but they are also a tool for learning about someone’s communication style, level of energy, personality, and level of professionalism. Listen carefully. How they say things can be just as important as what they’re saying.
5. Take Detailed Notes
For many interviewers this can be a challenge, but taking notes is so important! Write down a summary of every response and create a quick summary of your impressions at the end of the call (before you move on to the next interview). Trust me – you’ll forget most of what the applicant said, even if you really liked them.
6. Follow Up!
Don’t forget to send a “decline” email to anyone who isn’t moving forward in your interview process. Jobseekers report “lack of feedback” as the most frustrating part of the job-hunting process.
If you aren’t sure what questions you should ask during your interview, click here to download this FREE Phone Interview Form from our Hire LAB Course – it’s my free gift to you. The Hire LAB Course provides a step-by-step guide to finding and hiring your perfect candidate, and this form is one of many helpful tools that it includes.
Oh and by the way, if you just don’t want (or don’t have time) to do phone interviews – no problem! We can do them for you. Check out our phone interview service and reach out if you have any questions. I’m happy to help.