How To Handle Unexpected/unscheduled Phone Interviews

On 20 Mar 2021

How To Handle Unexpected/unscheduled Phone Interviews

If you’ve submitted your CVs and applied to Qatar jobs openings today, your chances for success in your job search will be greatly improved if you always expect the unexpected.

There is a 50% possibility that an unexpected call from a staffing recruitment in Doha happens, you can take either of these two approaches:

Approach #1 - Accept the call
Approach #2 -  Request to reschedule because you are unable to talk at that moment.
Approach #3 - Ask for a better time (when you are in a quiet, comfortable environment, have your notes ready, and are mentally prepared for the phone interview).

Good interviewers usually schedule the interview in advance. Sometimes, you suddenly see an anonymous number on your phone. As expected/unexpected, a staffing recruitment in Doha is on the line to ask you some questions regarding your application.

However, don't forget that not all recruiters in Doha schedule phone calls or phone screens ahead of time. At any moment, a recruitment specialist could stumble across your CV or an employer could decide to call you because your profile has caught his/her attention. 

When that happens, remember these tips:

Tip #1 - Keep your CV near the phone. Get a recent copy of your resume handy so you will have all the information you need right at your fingertips. 

Other than this, create your own cheat sheet. Read this article to know more: Phone Interview Tips that Will Land You a Second Interview

Tip #2 - Familiarize your cheat sheet.

Before taking the call, it is better to practice your cheat sheet. Remember, nothing can stop you from checking your notes as the caller is on the line and can’t see you personally.

What questions can you practice answering and must be included in your sheet? Read this blog again.

Many of these questions are hard to answer on the spot. By preparing your answers in advance, you will be more comfortable and ready to answer the questions. Your notes will refresh your memory and help you to answer straightly.

Tip #3 - Find a quiet place to take an undisturbed call.

Make sure you and the interviewer can hear and understand each other. During the call, keep away from:

- Children
- Pets
- Televisions
- Radios

They might give you noisy distractions that would affect your concentration on that interview.

If the call is scheduled in advance, you can arrange to have a quiet room all to yourself. But, if you received it unexpectedly, retreat into a quiet room or suggest another time for it.

Tip #4 - Stay hydrated. 

Sip some water periodically. If you don’t, take note: Nervousness often causes your mouth to dry out and might affect your voice and pronunciation. 

If you are expecting the call, drink a glass of water or at least have one on hand.

Tip #5 - Do not keep your mouth preoccupied.

Avoid eating, smoking or chewing gum. Excess movement of your mouth and throat will make you harder to understand. It might also distract or even irritate the recruiter.

Tip #6 - Give short answers.

Remember the golden rule KISS? Keep It Short and Simple. Some people have the tendency to talk too much when they are nervous. This is evident in job phone interviews because the applicant has no visual cues to indicate when it's the interviewer’s turn to talk. To avoid mistakes, only answer directly what has been asked. A moment of silence from your part lets the interviewer know that you are done talking.

Tip #7 - Speak slowly but surely. If it will be hard for your listener to understand if you’re speaking too fast. Make a conscious effort to slow down and enunciate clearly to have an effective conversation.

Tip #8 - Stand straight and stretch your muscles. Studies show that standing improves the quality of your voice by increasing airflow to your lungs. Many people find it easier to have the salesperson-like attitude when they are standing or moving around. Changing your posture helps in making you sound more confident to the interviewer.

Tip #9 - Smile. Science suggests that a smile changes the quality of your voice. If you are smiling, the interviewer will notice it in your tone.

How to end the phone interview?

The final moments of a phone screen are just as important as the preparation and the whole interview itself, as the recruiter can determine what’s at stake for you.

The phone interview is drawing to a close, what to do next? 

Step #1 - Thank the interviewer.

Say thanks to the caller for taking the time to speak with you. You may not have remembered his or her name after that interview, ask for it again and write it down, so that you can send a thank-you note shortly.

Step #2 - Suggest an in-person interview. 

The purpose of having a phone interview is to check if you can move to the next level  – a traditional job interview, which is the face-to-face appointment of the interviewer and interviewee.

If the recruiter doesn't mention what will happen next after your phone screen, you should bring it up.

Here is an example of what you can say, "Thank you very much for taking the time to call me. I'd like to have the opportunity to meet in person to further discuss my credentials. When will you be scheduling the next round of interviews?"

Step #3 - Reiterate your interest in the job post.

Leave the recruitment officer with the impression that you are enthusiastic about the job. Let him or her know how excited you are about the possibility of working with the company.

Step #4 - Send a thank-you note.

Follow up with a polite thank-you message as a gesture of your willingness for an in-person interview. Send it out promptly, as the recruiter may soon be making final decisions about who to call back.

Many people dread phone interviews as they find them nerve-wracking. This doesn't have to be the case. While they can happen with little or no warning, it is better to apply the above tips to be prepared every time your phone rings. That may be the next employer you will be working with.


Consult with us to make an informed career decision or to hire an perfect fit for your company.