Many of the interviews that you’ll undertake will begin with a phone call. Upon receiving your resume, employers will shortlist a number of people to call as a first interview. This call is often about more general topics although it can be an opportunity for the employer to explain a little more about the business and the role as well as getting a first impression from you, the candidate. As the old adage goes, first impressions last, so being prepared for that call can be your first important step to gaining employment. Below we here at MTC Australia have some tips and advice to ensure your phone manner gets you closer to landing the job.
Recording a voicemail message
Voicemails are of critical importance to your job search. It’s unreasonable to expect you to be able to answer every call, which means that the likelihood of your potential employer reaching your voicemail is almost certain. As this could be the first interaction the employer has with you, you need to ensure they get the right impression. When recording your voicemail message, ensure that it’s clear, concise, friendly and professional. For example; “Hi, you’ve reached John Smith. I’m sorry I missed your call. Please leave your name and contact number and I will return your call as soon as possible. Thank you”. While it might seem like a small matter, having a joke voicemail, a rude voicemail, or no voicemail at all, will most likely result in the employer not attempting to reach you again. Take 5mins and review your voicemail now, and amend if necessary.
Answering the phone
When you receive a call from a number not saved in your phone, remember that it could be an employer responding to your application. How you answer will set the tone for the remaining conversation, so ensure that you’re clear, polite, and friendly. For example; “Hello, John speaking”. Answering in ways like “Hello?”, “Yes?”, or similar one word phrases makes you sound rude, disinterested and impolite. On the other hand, answering clearly in the way above shows confidence, politeness and friendliness which is sure to quickly endear the caller to you and set a good precedent for the remaining portion of the call.
What to do during the phone interview
If possible, move to a quiet location when you’re on the call. It can be frustrating for both parties if one constantly needs to ask the other to repeat themselves. When discussing the role with the employer, ensure that you don’t interrupt, listen to the question carefully, and answer clearly. Don’t lie in your answers. If you’ve been asked a question about a skill, like knowing how to use a specific computer program, and you do not possess that skill, then the best way to answer is to say that you don’t currently possess the skill, but are interested and determined to learn any skills necessary for the job. Remember, skills can be taught, personality can not, so answering honestly and showing determination will give the employer the best impression.
As you move through the phone interview, remember to listen closely, answer thoughtfully and ask your own questions that you have (don’t speak about pay or hours here, ask about role specific responsibilities like; “What would I be doing day-to-day?). When the call is nearly over, always thank the employer for the call and their time. This shows respect and appreciation, both are endearing traits an employer looks for.
What to do after a phone interview
Once the call has been completed, it’s best to follow up with a thank you email, if you have the employer’s email address. It should read something like “Hi >name<, Thank you for you call and your time today, it was great to speak with you about the role. Enjoy the rest of your day and I look forward to hearing from you again soon. Best regards, John Smith”. This again shows maturity, respect and a strong interest in the role. Furthermore, it will solidify your name in the employer’s memory, making you stand out amongst the other candidates.
Learn the skills you need to get a job | MTC Australia
Creating your resume, submitting applications, and completing phone and in-person interviews can be a challenging task, but MTC Australia is here to help. Our professional team can help you get and keep a job by training you on the skills that you need to impress your potential employer. Not just phone and email etiquette, but basic computer skills, industry specific skills, as well as learning both written and verbal English. To give yourself the biggest advantage, select MTC Australia as your job services provider through centrelink, then get in touch with us for a better future on 1300 BECOME (1300 232 663).
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