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Phone/Virtual Interviews

Oftentimes employers will conduct their first round interviews virtually or over the phone. These are used to get an initial impression of the applicant before bringing them in for an in-person interview. Here are some tips to make your next virtual or phone interview a success.

Locate a quiet space

Background noise can be amplified and will be distracting to the interview. Ensure a reliable, clear connection. You should also know the software that will be used for the video call and have it already installed on your device.  You can reserve a space in the Career Development Center for your virtual or phone interview.

Practice concise answers

Avoid vocalized pauses such as “hmm”, “umm”, and the words “like” and “so”, as they are more pronounced over the phone. Speak clearly and concisely; the lack of body language and facial expressions makes speaking carefully and slowly, without any mumbling, vitally important. When on a video call, be sure to look at your screen or the camera for eye contact. Smiling helps in both instances to keep your tone interested and sincere.

Provide key points

Commonly asked questions are, “Tell me a little bit about yourself”, “Why should I hire you?” and “Why do you want to intern or work with us?” Be prepared to have 2-3 clear points with which to outline each of these questions.

Ask the employer questions

Learn the specific duties of the internship or job. Inquire about a timeline for the next step in their process. Come prepared with at least 2-3 questions.

Allow yourself time to think

Avoid accepting an internship or job the moment it is offered. Thank them for the interview and ask if you may respond with a decision within 24 hours.