Impress A Recruiter With Great Phone Manners
Even if a recruiter is interested in you initially, he or she may lose interest if you don't have good manners when it comes to the telephone. In some cases your ability to land a job may depend wholly on your phone capabilities; sometimes when you're applying for a job outside your geographic area, your interview is conducted over the phone. What are some tips for making sure you make the right impression on recruiters when you're dealing with them over the phone?
Check who is calling before you answer.
You don't want to answer the phone under circumstances nonconducive to a good conversation. You wouldn't want to pick up the phone and blithely answer it and find yourself on the line with a recruiter if you're at a loud party for example, would you? If you don't recognize a number, it could be a recruiter. Don't pick up unless you're in a quiet situation without distractions, and then make sure you announce yourself by name when you do choose to pick up.
Ensure that before you talk to a recruiter, you have all of your relevant job application materials on hand such as your resume and cover letter.
While a communication over the phone with a recruiter may not be an official interview, every conversation is a chance to impress a recruiter—or otherwise. Don't be caught off guard by questions; have materials handy to help you.
If you let a message go to voicemail instead of pick up the phone, make sure that your voicemail greeting is formal, polite, and nondescript.
Be likeable and sound intelligent, but don't stand out in any particular way. Don't draw attention to personal characteristics. Don't assign music instead of a standard ring tone either. Make sure that your box has a personalized message that provides the very minimal information to identify you, and that the message is polite and invites communication.
If you call back a recruiter, be aware that you might go to voicemail.
Ensure that the message you receive is going to be a professional, polite one without any convoluting information. Do not talk about how badly you want the job in the message. Something like this is best: "Hello, this is (name), returning your call regarding (position) at (company). I would be very excited to discuss this position with you at your convenience. My number is (number); I will be awaiting your call and look forward to talking to you soon. Again my number is (number).
As you can see, the rule with phone communications is generally to be minimal but not leave anything out. You don't want to sound like you're flustered or confused or missing details on the phone; you want to come across as polite, organized, and excited for further conversation. Many job candidates don't know anything about how to be polite with the phone, so if you do, you're one more step ahead of your competition.