Phone Interview Questions and Answers

Phone interview questions come just like the traditional face-to-face type of question. The only difference is you hardly get the time to formulate your thoughts, and you cannot see the interviewer. Hence, you two cannot be able to read each other’s body language.

Telephone interviews are mostly fixed during the early stages of the job interview process. Interviewers use it as an opportunity to get to know more about the job candidates. They are also effective for screening job applicants. It is cost-effective, as the interviewer does not need to invest the same level of time and resources as the traditional face-to-face interviews. The phone interview questions are also usually straight to the point.

Questions you can be asked include questions about your CV, education, work experience, behavioral questions, career goals, etc. Furthermore, read more about frequently asked job interview questions here and check our job interview preparation checklist

Typical phone interview questions you should prepare for.

  • Tell me about yourself

In this type of question, you don’t start in the past. You take it in chronological order starting from your present to the past and then possibly to the future. Talk about your current career path, your professional achievements, and accomplishments. Also, include awards, nominations, and promotions. Mention qualities that make you unique and make you stand out from the rest. End it with your next plan or your future goals and aspirations

  • Why are you searching for a job?

If you are unemployed, then the answer is obvious. But if not, you might have to provide a tangible reason as to why you are not only job-hunting but targeting that job in particular. This is not an avenue to say negative things about your current employer or current place of work.

You should rather channel that energy into making them know what you want to gain from the move and the value you intend to contribute. This is because as much as you want to gain from the company, they also want to benefit from you.

  • What do you know about this company?

Your response here will show your level of interest in the company. Employers believe that if you are interested in something, you try as much as possible to find out about it and read on it. Employers wouldn’t want to hire anyone that just applies for any job they see without being specific about what they want or taking time to research on their target company.

You get information like their mission statement, who is their CEO, their estimated number of employers, the products and services they have to offer, and who their biggest competitor is.

  • Why are you interested in this position?

With this question, the interviewer wants to see if you have a specific reason for applying to that position and what you plan to achieve with that position. You should take note that asking why you are interested in a job position is different from asking why you need a job. The former is more specific than later.

In answering this question, you should include what you are generally looking for in your job hunt and something you saw or found out about their job that perfectly fits into what you are looking for. How do you get an idea of that? You can get clues from their job description.

  • What types of jobs have you been looking for

This question is not to monitor the type of jobs you have been applying for. It is more about finding out if their job is in line with the type of job you are looking for. If you list jobs that are very different from the one they are offering, you could be raising red flags with that response, as they will feel you made a mistake applying in the first place.

Therefore, your response here should show that you are in line with the company theme. You might not to disclose the names of other companies where you have worked before and tell them it is confidential.

  • What are your salary expectations?

At this point, it may not be safe to give an exact figure. This is because the figure you would give might be too high or too low. If it is too high, the company might not want to hire you even if you are qualified, as they might not have the budget for that. On the other hand, if it is too low, consider yourself shortchanged. The best way is to withhold a number and tell them you are willing to consider an offer that is fair.

  • Tell me about your current job

You start with stating your job position, role, and what it is about. You could include the industry if you don’t want to mention the company in particular.  Give details of your specific achievements. Talk about your values and contributions. Talk about your experiences, and what you have learned, the tools you used, and the results you achieved.

You can be asked other common interview questions in phone interviews such as:

  • Why are you leaving your job?
  • What were the major challenges you faced with your last job? How did you handle them?
  • Why do you want this job?
  • What value can you add to this company?
  • Why do you think you are qualified for this job?
  • Are you willing to travel or work from any location?
  • What else will you want to know about this company?
  • What are you looking for in the next job that you couldn’t get with your current or past jobs?
  • How do you handle work-related stress and pressure?
  • What are your greatest strengths?
  • Why are you the best candidate for this job?
  • What are your greatest weaknesses?
  • What motivates you?
  • Describe your current job responsibilities
  • What are your short and long-term career goals?
  • How do you evaluate success?
  • Why should we hire you?
  • Describe a typical workday for you
  • What type of work environment would you prefer?

Using the STAR interview question response technique would help you answer some of these questions right. Remember to keep your response apt and concise.

Job Interview Topics – Common Job Interview Questions & Answers

Below you can find a list of common job interview topics. Each link will direct you to an article regarding the specific topics that discuss commonly asked interview questions. Furthermore, each article discusses why the interviewer asks these questions and how you answer them!

  1. Accomplishments
  2. Adaptability
  3. Admission
  4. Behavioral
  5. Career Change
  6. Career Goals
  7. Communication
  8. Competency
  9. Conflict Resolution
  10. Creative Thinking
  11. Cultural Fit
  12. Customer Service
  13. Direct
  14. Experience
  15. Government
  16. Graduate
  17. Growth Potential
  18. Honesty & Integrity
  19. Illegal
  20. Inappropriate
  21. Job Satisfaction
  22. Leadership
  23. Management
  24. Entry-Level & No experience
  25. Performance-Based
  26. Personal
  27. Prioritization & Time Management
  28. Problem-solving
  29. Salary
  30. Situational & Scenario-based
  31. Stress Management
  32. Teamwork
  33. Telephone Interview
  34. Tough
  35. Uncomfortable
  36. Work Ethic