Telephone interviews in recruitment | Page 2 | Sunday Observer

Telephone interviews in recruitment

7 August, 2022

At this time of crisis, particularly with transport limitations, employers have limited chances of conducting in-person interviews at their offices. Many of them have already switched to telephone interviewing in their recruitment drives due to the shortage of fuel in the market. However, even in normal times, conducting telephone interviews has many advantages.

On the eve of World Water Day last week, the U.N. offered a sobering statistic: according to its recent study, more people on earth have access to cell phones than toilets. It was revealed that out of the world’s estimated 7 billion people, 6 billion have access to mobile phones. This is obviously good information for market researchers and for telephone interviewers. In fact, being able to reach 85% of the world’s population via mobile phones is amazingly positive news for marketers and recruiters.

For many decades, the traditional form of interview has been face-to-face interviews or group interviews. However, technology has served as a boon to the corporate world. Thus, various other modes or types of interviews also came into existence, such as telephone and video interviews.

Convenient way

A greater proportion of organisations now use telephone interviews to assess potential employees’ general aptitudes, telephone manners, and other abilities as a result of the rise in call centres and other telephone-based industries. Telephone interviews are a quick and convenient way to find the top candidates and weed out undesirable prospects, but they should never take the place of the final in-person interview.

Employers who regularly hire a lot of people, especially graduate employers like huge accountancy firms and large banks, frequently conduct telephone interviews. Visit our guide on doing effective phone interviews if you want to learn more.

Phone interviews have many benefits, including being quicker and more convenient for both you and the interviewee than setting up an in-person meeting. Meeting in person is important as qualifications and experience, but such meetings depend on and demand personality, telephone skills, and demeanour. However, due to the fact that neither participant can see the other during a phone interview, the customary visual cues are missing.

Preliminary screening

For marketing companies and for occupations in sales, particularly for telephone selling, verbal communication skills are crucial. Hence, in such situations, telephone interviews are particularly common. However, other firms utilise them to conduct a preliminary screening of applicants for a wide range of positions.

Telephone interviews frequently serve the employer’s interests more than those of the candidate. However, a telephone interview is preferable to no interview at all for a job seeker. Telephone interviews have advantages and downsides, just like all practice techniques.

How do phone interviews work? A telephone interview, also known as a phone screening, is a job interview that is conducted over the phone but typically only uses audio and without video presence. Phone interviews are frequently used during the employment process before limiting their options and choosing candidates for further, more in-depth interviews in the following round. Hiring managers should utilise this form of intern review as an initial screening.

However, since there may be fewer opportunities to establish a personal connection during phone interviews than during in-person ones, job seekers may find them a little more difficult.

A phone conversation is far less expensive than a face-to-face interview, especially if the respondent is not nearby. Telephone interviews not only save money on transportation costs but also save travel time, which can be used more effectively and profitably elsewhere. A decrease in costs can make it possible to conduct more interviews, increasing the validity and reliability of the results and allowing for the elimination of any abnormal results, resulting in richer and higher-quality data.


Questioning flexibility when conducting a telephone interview is enormous. It is advantageous for the interviewer and the respondent to speak with an interviewer over the phone since it allows for a great degree of flexibility in the questioning process. This is a far better approach for the interviewer to screen potential applicants, make sure they are the right person to speak with, and give them more time to focus on any special interests the respondent may have expressed.

In addition to providing more thorough responses than you would likely get from an online survey and a greater response rate, it allows the respondent the option to ask any questions they may have.

Telephone interviews also provide a wider geographic reach for employers. Possible recruits who are working outside workplaces, such as salesmen, engineers, and technicians, are notoriously difficult to find because they travel and do not find time for personal interviews. This means that individuals are less likely to reply to a job offer. However, telephone interviews can quickly reach a large number of people with little effort on the part of both the interviewer and the respondent.

However, with many of the abovementioned benefits, telephone interviews are not without disadvantages. Insufficient body language, which can be immensely useful to fathom the suitability of a candidate, is a significant setback. This is common to the interviewer and the candidate.

If the interviewees are visible, the employer can identify whether or not they are interested in the position. It might be challenging to determine a candidate’s level of focus during a phone interview. If the candidate disagrees with a statement the interviewer may have made, he cannot notice them smiling or frowning. Also, you cannot see their precise body or facial expressions. Hence, the employer has no alternative other than to fly blind.


Many organisations have switched to telephone interviewing, specifically for preliminary screening, to save costs and time. However, it is important to mention that video interviews conducted using tools like Zoom may offer more advantages over phone interviews as the ability to visually transmit information is more effective.

Telephone interviews can save money by reducing the cost of the interview location, travel expenses, and sustenance expenses. The interviewer can choose possible applicants from the CVs that have been submitted, chat with them multiple times, if required, on the phone, and further reduce the pool to a manageable number.

They have a better opportunity to analyse the applicant’s suitability and determine whether it is worthwhile to set up a subsequent interview. Also, employers can use telephone interviews to screen potential candidates before scheduling an important in-person interview. The most important factor is that face-to-face interviews can be done after the screening process is over, which can enormously reduce the time and stress for the employer.