You will learn a number of phone interview tips and tools in this article to help you get the most out of your employee screening.
As you move through the candidate screening process your goal is to gather as much useful data as possible. And, you need to reduce the number applicants to a manageable number.
The final step in a good screening process is to conduct a phone interview. This short conversation is your first opportunity to ask questions. The responses let you decide whether or not to continue to the face to face interview.
Here are ten tips to help you conduct better phone interviews:
10 Phone Interview Tips
Complete Before The Decision To Interview – Conduct your phone interview before you schedule the face to face interview. During the phone interview you will decide whether or not to pursue the candidate.
Prepare Your Questions In Advance – Prepare 4- 6 effective phone interview questions in advance. Don’t try to make it up as you go along. Each question should be designed to get you a specific piece of data related to one of your critical job requirements.
Explain Your Purpose – Tell the person why you are calling, where you are in the process and what you hope to accomplish. In a couple of sentences you can establish rapport and set expectations.
Ask Your Questions In Order – Ask your prepared phone interview questions in the order you created them. Try to create your questions in a logical order either chronological or grouped by requirement.
Take Notes – Take notes during the conversation. You can record your notes on the same piece of paper you wrote your questions. Just get enough information so you can recreate the conversation if necessary.
Probe For More Information – Be certain to follow up on your original questions. Probe for more information. Dig a little deeper. The more information you get the better decision you will make.
Discuss Special Issues – This is an opportunity to discuss any special issues like travel, transportation or even salary. Any issue that is a checklist item like the ability to travel or working weekends or having transportation can be discussed during this screen. Of course you only want to go into this detail with the candidates you have chosen to pursue.
Schedule The Interview – For those people you choose to pursue, this is good opportunity to schedule them in for a face to face interview. It saves time and effort when you already have the person on the phone.
End On A Friendly Note – Regardless of the outcome, you want to treat everyone with total respect. It is a reflection on you and your company. Treat all candidates in a friendly manner.
Follow Up – Make a habit of following up with each person. If you have scheduled an interview, send a confirming letter or email. If you have not scheduled an interview, send the person a thank you note letting them know you will not be pursuing them. This is more than common courtesy. It helps to build the reputation of your company.
These phone interview tips go a long way to helping spend your time with the best candidates.