How to Prepare for a Phone Interview

Congratulations! The employer liked what they saw on your resume, and now you have the chance to tell the employer more about you. Phone interviews are often used to screen the candidates and find out more about their experience, salary expectations, and fit for the company. Phone interviews can range anywhere from 10-45 minutes. Before scheduling the interview, the employer should tell you how long it will take and what to expect. Follow these steps to learn how to prepare for a phone interview.

How to Prepare for a Phone Interview

Know the details

Companies will contact you via email or telephone to set up a phone interview. When they reach out to schedule, ensure that you know all the receive necessary details. You should always confirm the date, time (time zone), and who will call who. Typically, the interviewer will call the interviewee to conduct the interview, but it never hurts to confirm this with the interviewer beforehand. Ensure that you have given the interviewer the correct phone number where you can be reached.

When it is time for the call, make sure you are in a quiet place where you can focus. Have your notes and questions at the ready. Be yourself, and be confident, YOU got this!

Research the company

Researching the company you are applying to is helpful for a few reasons. Your research will help you in the interview and show the employer that you took the time to do your “homework” beforehand.

Firstly, it is essential to know the company to ensure that it will be a good fit for you. Through your research, you might find that you have more in-depth questions that you want to ask, write these down, and save them for the interview. You are interviewing the company as much as they are interviewing you. Ensure that the position and the company are the right fit for you.

Secondly, researching the company is essential to show the employer that you care about the interview and are genuinely interested in the position. One common question in any interview is, “what do you know about the company?” or “why are you interested in working at company X?” These questions allow you to show the interviewer that you did your research and are interested in the position. Through your research, find aspects of the company that you are genuinely interested in. Some examples include a company’s community involvement, awards they have received, or articles about the company and what they are about.

Know your qualifications

When conducting a phone interview, it is helpful to keep a copy of your resume in front of you. Common questions include “tell me about your qualifications” or “can you further explain your experience” this allows you to expand on what was on your resume. Know why you are a perfect fit for the position and tell the interviewer your history.

Resumes only give the interviewer a brief look at your job history and qualifications. Interviews used to get to know you and your qualifications more. Don’t merely recite what is on your resume, talk about something they don’t know, or expand on a point that is important on your resume. If a job posting specifically states they want an employee who is experienced with Microsoft Excel, then talk about a time you used Excel to solve a problem. Relate your experience to the job posting every chance you get.

Phone interviews are one of the first steps in the interview process. Your resume/cover letter got you here, and now it is your turn to show the employer why you want the position and why you are the best fit for the job.


Now, you know how to prepare for a phone interview. Remember, if you are a CanScribe graduate, you have resume/cover letter support for life. If you are having difficulty getting to the phone interview stage, contact us today! We can help you improve your resume to help you land a phone interview AND your dream job!