Preparing For a Phone Interview

The phone interview is typically the first step in the interview process wherein a representative of a company will initially screen the applicant to see if he or she has the basic skills needed for the position. The goal of the applicant is to get a “face to face” interview.

The Basics – The hiring manager will be calling you on the number you confirmed with your primary contact at Floodgate Medical, prior to your interview. Make yourself available and near your phone in a quiet setting 10-15 minutes before your scheduled interview time in case the Manager calls you early and 10-15 minutes after your scheduled interview, should the Manager be running late. The duration of the call can be as short as 20 minutes, up to 1 hour.

  1. If you intend on using your cell phone, please make sure your phone is fully charged and you are in an area where you are certain you have clear service/reception. There is nothing worse than a dropped call during an interview.
  2. Keep your resume in clear view as you will need it as a reference when walking the Interviewer through your background.
  3. Have a short list of your accomplishments available.
  4. Have a pen and paper handy for note taking.
  5. Turn call-waiting off so your call isn’t interrupted. Notify everyone in your household that you are on an important phone interview so they know not to disturb you.
  6. If something unexpectedly comes up and the scheduled time is no longer convenient, ask if you could talk at another time and suggest some alternatives. Please call and notify your primary contact at Floodgate Medical immediately so there is no lost communication. If the need to reschedule should occur, it’s important to reiterate your interest in the position with the Manager before ending the call so he or she knows you are taking this opportunity seriously.
  7. Clear the room – evict the kids and the pets. Turn off the stereo and the TV. Close the door. Have all that you need at hand, including your phone charger plugged in.

Preparation – Most candidates who are interviewing for this position have spent between 2-3 hours researching the company. Get familiar with the company before the phone meeting. What is the history, mission statement and overall tone of the website? What is their product portfolio and what are the products’ indications? Who are their competitors?   Be able to answer these questions confidently.  It’s also important to practice interviewing. Talking on the phone to a potential employer isn’t as easy as it may seem. It’s common to get nervous, lose your train of thought or get tongue-tied; the more prepared you are to discuss your resume, your interest in the company and the company itself, the less likely you are to get stumped. Also remember to take your time when answering a question. It is perfectly acceptable to take a moment to collect your thoughts, but don’t leave too much dead air.  Practice a couple of mock phone interviews with a friend or spouse so you become comfortable talking about your background, successes and of course posing questions to your audience.

Enthusiasm –It’s important to the Hiring Manager that he or she can hear the enthusiasm, passion and excitement in your voice. A hiring sales manager is looking for a ‘people person’ with a solid track record of success; this needs to shine through in your phone interview if you hope to move forward for a face to face. * If you are not sincerely interested in this opportunity, please call your main point of contact at Floodgate Medical and we will cancel your interview. We are here to help you land your dream job; if you are feeling uncertain about this then let us know. We do not want to waste anyone’s time!

  1. Smile! You can hear a smile through the phone and smiling will project a positive image to the listener and will change the tone of your voice.
  2. Speak slowly and enunciate clearly.
  3. Avoid chewing gum and smoking – The interviewer will hear both, and it’s a turn off.
  4. Don’t interrupt the interviewer. It’s easy to get excited and want to interrupt to answer his or her question before they have even finished asking. If you have something you want to say, jot it down on your note pad and mention it when it’s your turn to speak. That way you can focus on listening.

Closing – If at all possible, find out what the next step is (when, where, with who, etc.) before the phone meeting, so you can close the Hiring Manager on being advanced. Many Hiring Managers see a Red Flag when candidates do not ask for the next step; it shows lack of interest and lack of aggressiveness on your end.

Follow up – Email the Hiring Manager with a follow up email stating your interest and appreciation for his/her time. Also, please be sure to reach out to your main point of contact at Floodgate Medical to let him/her know the interview is complete.