Susan M. Heathfield of About.com says, “The telephone interview or candidate screen allows the employer to determine if the candidate’s qualifications, experience, workplace preferences and salary needs are congruent with the position and organization. The telephone interview saves managerial time and eliminates unlikely candidates. You want to ask enough questions to determine if the person is a viable candidate. Remember, you have already screened many resumes and applications to come up with your short list of telephone screening candidates. These should be your best prospects at this point in your recruiting process.”
She offers a form that has a list of prepared questions and a place for note taking of the response. The benefit is that you are prepared for the call and if you are calling multiple candidates, you can compare apples to apples when looking at their answers. Suggested questions include:
- Not to limit you or commit you to a certain dollar figure, but what’s the minimum salary you’d consider right now to accept another position?
- If the candidate is not currently working, why and when did you leave your most recent position?
- Describe the management style you exhibit and prefer.
- How have you spent your time since you left your most recent position?
- How did your most recent position support the accomplishment of the mission of your organization?
A phone screening form is an excellent resource. It can help you save time by only bringing in the candidates for an in-person interview that meet your criteria.