Phone interviews are an important way to improve the quality of your hires, identify the best candidates, and save time in your recruiting efforts. But if you are not asking the right questions of your applicants, you are missing a real opportunity. Questions like “What is your current and expected salary?” and “Why are you leaving your current role?” will help you get an early feel for the person you are interviewing and how they will fit within your expectations as a potential hire.

Here are four questions that will really help you evaluate your candidates better.

How would you contribute to this position?

This question prompts interviewees to explain how they will add value, giving you the chance to evaluate their understanding of the position. At such an early stage of the interview process, it is important to learn as much about the candidate as possible. Asking questions provides them with the opportunity to show their understanding, skills, experience and how they will make a difference and meet your needs.

How have past work experiences helped prepare you for this opportunity?

This question will help you eliminate candidates who are less qualified than you are looking for. If you notice a difference between what they say in their resume and what they describe on the phone, it is an opportunity to weed out disqualified candidates. This is also an excellent opportunity to ask any follow-up questions you might have. Resumes only offer so much space for candidates to explain their relevant work history, and if you are interviewing an experienced worker, a one-page resume might not cut it.

Why do you want this job?

To screen out unqualified candidates, ask about their qualifications. To screen out uncommitted candidates, ask about their motivation. Let them tell you why they want to work for your company, how the position fits their career goals and how they want to make a difference.

What questions do you have for me?

If a candidate is genuinely interested in the opportunity, they will ask at least a few questions. Look for clarifying questions about the job description, the company, what it’s like to work for you as an employer. Their questions also show their understanding of the industry and business simply by the weight of building rapport. The better their questions are in a phone interview, the more likely they are to have good questions on the job.

That said, if the candidate asks more than introductory-level questions about salary, flexible-work options or other benefits, a phone interview is not the appropriate time for those discussions. If their own demands are top-of-mind this early in the process, it’s a good chance that candidate will be an equally high-maintenance employee.

For more tips on how to attract and recruit the industry’s top talent, contact the recruiting experts at Verum Technical today.