A common practice in the field of IT consulting is the phone interview. For many consultants, this may be old hat. But it’s never a bad idea to get some fresh perspective on things you could be doing to make the experience a better one. While it is important to prepare for the interview like you would a regular interview (i.e. researching the company, preparing for potential questions, developing your questions for the interviewer, etc.) here are some of Beacon’s top tips when it comes to participating in a phone interview:

• Be prepared and waiting for the call at least 5 minutes before the scheduled time.
• Use a land line phone for quality if at all possible.
• Have pens and a notepad to take notes you may need to remember.
• Have a printed copy of your resume in front of you.
• Create a quiet workspace where you will not be interrupted.
• Be sure to speak directly into the phone. Speak distinctly and slowly.
• Be aware of how a language accent may affect the sound quality of the conversation.
• The interviewer will likely be taking notes so slow down and speaking clearly.
• Silence over the phone can be a huge negative. If you need time to think, then say, “Let me think a bit on that “or “give me a minute to organize my thoughts on that.”
• Dress for the interview. If you roll out of bed and do the interview in your pj’s, it can have an impact on your mindset. Get dressed for the interview to put you in the right frame of mind.
• Smile. Make sure to try to do this. The person on the other end of the line will actually be able to hear it in your voice. Trust me.

Again, these tips are focused specifically on phone interviews. It’s important with every interview to ask what the next steps are and follow up with a thank you email or letter. Good luck incorporating these into your next phone interview.

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