What Questions To Ask In A Phone Interview
6 mins read

What Questions To Ask In A Phone Interview

When you’re in the process of job hunting, the telephone interview is often one of the first steps in the interview process. Telephone interviews are usually conducted by a hiring manager or recruiter, and they’re typically used to screen candidates before inviting them to interview in person.

While a phone interview may not be as daunting as an in-person interview, you’ll still want to be prepared to answer common interview questions and sell yourself to the interviewer. Here are some questions you may be asked during a phone interview, along with tips on how to answer them effectively.

What can you tell me about yourself?

This is often the first question you’ll be asked in a phone interview. While it may seem like a simple question, it’s actually quite difficult to answer. You don’t want to give the interviewer too much information about yourself, but you also don’t want to give too little.

A good way to approach this question is to think about the key points you want to communicate about yourself. What are your strengths? What makes you unique? What are your career aspirations? Choose a few key points that you think will give the interviewer a good overview of who you are and what you can bring to the role.

Why are you interested in this position?

This question is another opportunity for you to sell yourself to the interviewer. When answering this question, be sure to mention specific aspects of the role that appeal to you. What skills will you get to use in this role? What about the company culture? What are the opportunities for career growth?

By articulating what you find appealing about the role, you’ll show the interviewer that you’re truly interested in the position and that you would be a good fit for it.

What are your strengths?

When an interviewer asks you to discuss your strengths, they’re giving you an opportunity to sell yourself and highlight why you’re the best candidate for the job. This is your chance to toot your own horn, so don’t be shy!

Think about the qualities that make you a good fit for the role and the company. Are you a good leader? A creative thinker? A strong communicator? Choose a few strengths that you think will impress the interviewer and back them up with specific examples.

What are your weaknesses?

While this may seem like a difficult question to answer, it’s actually an opportunity to show the interviewer that you’re self-aware and constantly working to improve yourself. When answering this question, choose a quality that you’re working on improving and describe the steps you’re taking to address it.

For example, let’s say you’re working on being more organized. You might say something like, “I’m working on being more organized in my work. I create to-do lists for myself and I’m always looking for ways to streamline my work process.”

By showing that you’re aware of your weaknesses and that you’re taking steps to improve them, you’ll demonstrate to the interviewer that you’re committed to personal and professional growth.

What are your career aspirations?

This question allows the interviewer to get a sense of your long-term goals and whether or not you see yourself with the company for the long haul. When answering this question, be honest about your aspirations but also show that you’re committed to the role you’re applying for.

For example, you might say something like, “My long-term goal is to be promoted to a position of greater responsibility within the company. I’m confident that I have the skills and experience to excel in this role and I’m eager to contribute to the company’s success.”

By articulating your career aspirations, you’ll show the interviewer that you’re ambitious and that you have a clear vision for your future.

What are your salary requirements?

This is a question that’s often best saved for the end of the interview, after the interviewer has had a chance to get to know you and your qualifications. When answering this question, be honest about your salary requirements but also be flexible.

It’s always a good idea to do some research on salary ranges for the position you’re applying for before the interview so that you have a good idea of what to expect. When giving a salary range, be sure to start at the high end of the range so that you leave yourself some room to negotiate.

By being honest and flexible with your salary requirements, you’ll show the interviewer that you’re reasonable and that you’re willing to negotiate.

What to do if you’re nervous in a phone interview

It’s not uncommon to feel a little bit nervous before a phone interview. After all, you can’t see the interviewer’s body language or facial expressions, so it can be harder to gauge how the conversation is going.

Here are a few tips to help you relax and ace your next phone interview:

Dress the part

Just because the interviewer can’t see you doesn’t mean you should show up to the call in your PJs. Dressing the part will not only make you look and feel more professional, but it will also help you to take the interview process more seriously.

Use a landline

If possible, use a landline instead of your cell phone. The last thing you want is for your call to be dropped in the middle of the interview.

Find a quiet place

It’s important to find a quiet place to conduct your phone interview. Not only will this help you to concentrate, but it will also ensure that the interviewer can hear you clearly.

Take notes

Having a pen and paper handy can be helpful during a phone interview. You can use it to jot down notes about the conversation or to write down any questions you want to ask at the end.


Even though the interviewer can’t see you, smiling during the conversation will help to make you sound more friendly and approachable.

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