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Preparing for a phone or Skype interview

Are you the type of person who still needs your mum to phone to book you a doctors appointment? Don’t panic! We’ve put together some information on what to expect from a phone or Skype interview and the best ways to prepare for one.

Phone and Skype interviews are becoming a pretty standard stage of the interview process nowadays. Very few people feel completely comfortable talking on the phone or Skype and even more so to a stranger. Being nervous is absolutely normal. In fact, it’s good, it shows you care but you need to channel your nervous feelings into positive, enthusiastic vibes.

What to expect?

The phone or Skype rings, make sure you nail your opening line. Stumbling at the first hurdle won’t impress your interviewer so keep it simple. Something along the lines of “hello, *insert your name* speaking” will be spot on. You can expect the interviewer to go over your CV to make sure you match the skills you say you have and can communicate these over the phone.

Preparing for a phone or Skype interview

When you’re preparing for a phone or Skype interview you need to make yourself comfortable. Decide where you’re going to take the phone call – preferably somewhere quiet. If it’s a Skype call you’ll also need somewhere with good lighting, clean surroundings (your interviewer doesn’t want to see your dirty clothes all over the bed) and don’t forget to smile! An interviewer will notice this, they don’t want to hire someone who looks miserable. Make sure you plan your outfit. If it’s a Skype call you’ll need to dress smart and professional whereas if it’s a phone call you can wear your fleecy pyjamas.


Do your research on the company! Make sure you have a good understanding of what the company does and how you can be a valuable team member of the business.

Practice Interview Questions

Prepare some answers to typical interview questions. Practice makes perfect. Practice and practice until you’re feeling confident. Then record yourself and listen to it back to see where you can improve. You could even ask a friend or family member to ask you questions and you answer them that way you can receive feedback from them.

Keep your CV to Hand

The good thing about phone and Skype interviews is that you can have your CV right in front of you and your potential employer won’t even know. Utilise this to your advance and refer to it when asked about your skills and personality after all they chose to interview you via Skype or phone because of your CV. Remember to keep it brief as you don’t want the interviewer to overhear you rustling papers in the background.

Listen, Listen, Listen

This is very important! Take your time and think about what the interviewer has just said before responding. Try to slow down your speech when speaking over the phone or on Skype, when nervous it’s easy to speak way too fast and the interviewer won’t have a clue what you just said. So remember slow but not too slow and don’t ever interrupt.

Place, Time and Date

If it’s a Skype interview it’s best to take place at a desk so the interviewer can see you clearly. A telephone conversation means no one will see you so you could dress more laid back from the comfort of your bed, sofa or at a desk wherever you would like.

Make sure your phone and laptop are fully charged and switched on with sound so you don’t miss that call. Make sure you’re connected to wifi and do a test run with a friend to check sound volume and webcam if a Skype interview. Make sure you know what time and date your interview is and that you’re in a quiet area where you won’t be disturbed when it takes place.

Ask yourself: is my Skype username professional?

And finally… you now know everything about preparing for a phone or Skype interview so go and nail it. Good luck!

Looking for face to face interview tips? Read this blog.

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