Telephone Techniques in Job Hunting
Very often the first contact a job searcher has with an employer is by telephone. Research of hiring practices consistently reveals the importance of first impressions made by the job seeker. A good telephone manner is crucial to a successful job search.
A good telephone communicator can express themselves clearly and concisely with a voice that is relaxed and full of energy. Cheerful, positive responses will assist you in reaching your goal -- an interview appointment.
The telephone has many uses in the job search. Here are some of them:
- To make an interview appointment.
- To obtain information concerning personnel representatives and supervisors who do the hiring and to obtain general company information.
- To follow up on an application or resume which has been submitted or follow up on an actual job interview.
Before you call, prepare!
Know who you are calling. Prepare what you plan to say in advance. Write down main ideas you want to include and questions you want to ask. Be prepared with paper and pencil to record the answers and other information that you are given. Writing down information you receive by telephone helps you to be a good listener. Don't hesitate to restate the procedure to the employer:
"I will be coming to your office on ___ at ____ o'clock. The name of the person I should ask for is______________."
Thank the person with whom you talked.
As you begin the call, remember to state your name, why you are calling, and where you obtained information about the job opening. Give your name slowly and clearly.
"Hello, this is _______________. I'm responding to your newspaper ad for an Electronic Technician. I have just completed my Associate of Technical Arts Degree in Electronic Technology at Edmonds Community College and your job advertisement was most interesting to me. With my training I am prepared to meet the requirement of your job. I would like to set up an appointment time to talk with you about the position you have advertised."
Be sure to know the name and the title of the person to whom you are talking by the end of the telephone conversation.
Be prepared to tell the employer about your qualifications in a brief and concise manner. Remember to state the qualifications you have which meet the requirements of the job. Do not add unnecessary information.
Don't be afraid to ask questions yourself that might determine whether you really want to apply or not, but be brief.
Practice does make perfect in talking to employers on the telephone. Perhaps a friend or relative will role play with you --this can make your telephone calls go more smoothly. Your manner should be friendly but businesslike. The more you use your skills the better you become!
Thank you is a very important word to remember. In your job search, be sure it becomes a usual ending to all of your telephone conversations and be sure to ask, "When would you suggest I call again?"
The applicant who plays her/his cards right does have decision-making power. Always remember that a large portion of the hiring decision is made on subjective information.
After an interview a follow-up telephone call is necessary to a successful job search. These calls will let the employer know that you continue to be interested in the job and will give you information as to whether a hiring decision has been made. It is very acceptable to inquire about when to expect a hiring decision. Be sure that your follow-up calls are recorded in your job search book.