Tips for Accountants: How to Ace the Phone Screen

You’ve been scheduled for a phone interview in a week and don’t know what to expect.

While some phone screens can be a mere 10 minutes long and fairly surface level, others can be of a much greater duration, with more detailed questions. Regardless of the length, it’s important to make a great first impression. After all, your performance during the phone screen may determine whether you’re offered a face-to-face interview. To ensure that you get a chance at some face time practice the following two tips.

Sell Your Personality

How do you communicate your personality when you’re only a voice at the end of the line? First and foremost, speak with energy and enthusiasm. Smile when you talk and keep your answers succinct and clear. Listen carefully to the speaker, and wait to ensure that they’re finished talking before you begin your answer. Have a list in front of you that summarizes some of your career highlights, along with your resume. Doing this will help you to relax and feel prepared, enabling you to communicate with confidence.

Preparation

If want to ace the phone screen, it’s imperative that you prepare thoroughly for it. Find a quiet room and ideally a landline. You don’t want to be distracted by a dropped call, barking dog or other noise, and neither does the person interviewing you. Have notes that reflect your research on the company’s goals, values and current challenges. Include comments on how you could add value, and a few questions that you could ask. Maybe the interview will only be 10 minutes long, or maybe it will be 45 minutes – either way it pays to be prepared.

If you want to deliver a great phone interview, communicate with enthusiasm and clarity. Do your advance preparation to build your confidence. By doing so, you’ll make a great first impression and potentially get buy-in from your prospective employer – all before you even walk in the door.