Phone Interview?

Top Tips For Your Next Job Interview

Phone Interview?

If you are scheduled for a phone interview, find a quiet space. And if you’re going to use your mobile phone, check your charge and make sure you have reception.

Today’s job market has become more competitive than ever. A large focus is often placed on creating a strong, engaging resume, but what should you do when you land that job interview of your dreams? The PSM Recruiting Team has extensive experience assisting individuals preparing for an upcoming interview.  Based on our experience, here are a few helpful tips:

Before the Interview:

  • Conduct an internet search and review common questions.

Quick Tip: is a great resource to find interview questions a specific company typically asks. The website allows individuals to posts reviews and information about interviews they have undergone with a specific company. 

  • Print or make a list of approximately 5 to 10 general interview questions including:
    • Why does working for this company interest you?
    • What do you know about the company?
  • Practice answering these questions.
  • Personalize your answers by sharing experiences that demonstrate your mastery of the types of skills required by the job.
  • Thoroughly review the posted job description for each requirement listed and write down your qualifications.
    • If you are not as strong in a particular requirement, this process will help you to prepare a response for addressing it in the interview if needed.
  • For a contract role:
    • Make sure you fully understand the specific skills required for the position. If the company is looking for candidates with planning experience and knowledge of Maximo software, make sure you highlight your experience and abilities with that software during the interview. Be ready to explain where and how you have performed the required job skills. Remember, they are looking for someone who can hit the ground running.
  • For a permanent role:
    • Your experience and skill sets are still very important, but the company also wants to make sure you are going to be a good long-term fit for their organization.  You should highlight your background, but also express your desire to learn and develop with the company.
  • Review the company’s website, social media pages, etc. and make a list of questions you would like to ask during the interview. Ask questions that show your interest in the company and the job position for which you are interviewing.

The day of the interview: 

  • Be prepared!
  • If the interview is going to take place over the phone, ensure that you have access to a quiet space.
    • Remember to have the following items in front of you:
      • Notebook and a pen
      • Copy of your resume and a list of references
      • Copy of transcripts
      • Relevant work samples if provided previously
    • If you plan on using a mobile phone, make sure the phone is charged it has reception.
  • If you are meeting in person, plan to arrive 10 to 15 minutes early.
  • Speak slowly and professionally during your interview.
  • Listen carefully and welcome all questions.
  • Be honest about your experience and give direct answers. Allow yourself a moment or two to develop your answers in your head before you respond.
  • As applicable, ask the questions you previously prepared. Also, remember to ask when the hiring manager expects to make a decision.
  • Lastly, but most importantly, thank the interviewer for their time and follow-up with a thank-you email within (2) days.

For more Employment, Resume, and Interviewing Tips, subscribe to our blog using the link to the right of this post. Or, visit Employment Opportunities page for a list of our current job openings.


Formatting Your Resume for a Contract Position

Resume Format

Resume Formatting Tips and Suggestions that can make you more successful when applying for your next contract position.


The thought of creating a resume from scratch can be an overwhelming task, but it doesn’t have to be.  Based on our experience, here are some key tips for making your resume top notch!

Quick Resume Tips

  • Tailor your resume to fit the job for which you are applying.  Analyze the requirements for the job, and if you meet those requirements, make sure your resume includes key words and phrases that support those requirements.
  • Make sure relevant information is at (or close to) the beginning of a sentence.  This will make it easy for the manager to scan your resume and determine that your skills are a good fit for the job.  Don’t clutter up your content with verbiage that really doesn’t help get across that you are a good candidate that meets or exceeds the job requirements.
  • Use a font that looks professional, is easy to read, and is 11 or 12 pitch in sizeArial size 11 is a favored choice.
  • Ensure you use at least one line of spacing between paragraphs and sections.  This makes your content much easier to read.
  • Avoid long run-on sentences……be brief and to the point.  Also, ensure that you use bullets when making lists.
  • Avoid using “complicated formatting”.   The formatting needs to be simple and easily edited so that your recruiter can make minor changes quickly.
  • Don’t get carried away.  Your resume should be limited to 3 or 4 pages.  Resumes that are much longer often do not get read completely by the hiring manager.

Basic Resume Layout

Based on our experience, we recommend using the following sections when formatting your resume:


  • The header should contain your “complete” first name, your complete middle name and your last name.  Recruiters often are required to provide clients with middle names.  For purposes of a resume, avoid using “nicknames”.
  • The header should also contain all of your contact information including your primary home street address, email address and best phone number for contacting you.


  • At the beginning of your resume, there should be a section highlighting your accomplishments…….especially those that are relevant to the desired job.
  • Use data points that prove your value and when citing numbers use the numerical form (90%) vs the written form (ninety percent).

Work Experience

  • Your work experience should be in “reverse” chronological order, starting with your latest employment.
  • Each new job in your work history should begin with your job title, name and location of the company, and employment dates.
  • For each entry, detail duties and accomplishments that are “relevant.”  Be as brief as possible while still providing the necessary information to highlight your skills.
  • Period(s) of Unemployment that are two years and longer, should be noted and a brief explanation of the employment gap(s) should be provided.


  • Your education history should include degrees that you have earned, including: the name of the University, Major, coursework relevant to the job, and any Honors.  Place more relevant degrees first.
  • For more experienced job seekers, education is generally not as important as work experience and can be placed below it in the resume layout.

Additional Skills

  • Listing additional skills, tools, software applications, spoken languages or software languages is important because every tool you use cannot usually be included in your work experience section.  These skill sets can also make your resume appear in search results when recruiters and hiring managers conduct candidate searches.

Interests and Awards

  • The interests and awards section is where you can show on paper who you are personally.  It’s important to highlight relevant personal accomplishments.  Be specific.


  • A reference section is not necessary for most resumes, but if you include one, say that your “References are available upon request”.    Then be able to quickly send requested references to your recruiter or hiring manager that includes names, titles and contact information.  Be sure that your references are aware that they may be contacted.

Don’t forget to spell check and grammar check your resume before sending it out.   It is also wise to have your work proof read by a trusted friend, who may suggest edits to improve your resume.

For Employment, Resume, and Interviewing Tips, please continue reading our blog.  Or, visit Employment Opportunities page for a list of our current job openings.