Hoo's Tech Interviews: Phone Interviews

Tyler Macaluso – September 14th, 2017

Have a technical interview coming up and have no idea what to expect? Want to learn how to gain a competitive edge in the interview process over other applicants?

This will be the first publication of a multi-part series on Tech Interviews for Hoo's. Each publication will include one or two different types of tech interviews you might be exposed to, with a general overview of how these different kind of interviews work for both the interviewer and the applicant. Furthermore, tips and techniques on the actions you should take before, during and after the interview will also be included to help you ace the interview and continue on with the rest of the hiring process.

The Developer Phone Interview

The first type of tech interview is the Phone Interview. This kind of interview is possible for many different kinds of tech jobs, from developers to engineers, and is thus one of the more common types of interviews, especially early on in the interview process. The approach and actions you should take during this are generally the same however, regardless of the specific position you are applying for.

The Basics:

  • Find a quiet, comfortable place to work where you will not be interrupted; while this might sound obvious, you want to find a place where you can problem-solve effectively in case you have to think in the spur of the moment.
  • Make sure your phone works- going both ways! Make sure you are in a location that has a strong and consistent signal. Wearing headphones/ earbuds is recommended to allow typing or writing during the interview.
  • Be prepared- do your research on the company and have questions ready! Have writing utensils readily available in case you need to take notes or work out a problem.

During the Interview:

  • Being asked a technical or programming question during interviews such as these is very common!
  • Don’t be afraid to think out-loud as this may help you work through the problem, as well as allowing the interviewer to follow your thought process as you progress through the problem.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask questions, especially to find out unknown info about the scope or terminology of the problem.
  • Start with a simple potential solution and then develop and expand your solution from there

After the Interview:

  • Thank the Interviewer for their time and ask for contact information in case you have any more questions
  • Send a Thank-You note/ email within 48 hours (tips for how to make Thank You notes can be found on the UVA Career Center Website)
  • Follow-up between 10-14 days later if you have not heard anything back to inquire about the status of your application

Much of the information included within these blog posts was compiled from Career Center Website resources and Palantir.com, two resources which would be great places to look if you want more information on a specific type of interview.

Next up : Coding Interviews