Total Talent Management

Phone screening

Phone screens can be a time-saving step in the recruitment process. While phone conversations cannot replace in-person interviews, they can be used to narrow your candidate pool or learn more about an out-of-area candidate, but are most commonly used to determine if the applicant is still interested based on the “conditions of employment,” the proposed salary range, work shift, etc.

Notes from a phone screen become part of the recruitment record and should be kept for three years.


Use a Telephone Screen Template (MS Word) to screen candidates. You may also develop your own template using interviewing and technical questions. Be sure to use the same screening template on all candidates.

Before starting your phone screens, establish a system for evaluating your results. Consistency with evaluations will assist you in identifying candidates to move to the next step in the interviewing process. For more see information, visit the candidate evaluation form tips and guidelines webpage.

During the phone screen, allow time for candidates to ask you questions about the position. Be prepared to provide information on the next steps in the interviewing process. Also, let candidates know when you will be getting back to them about the results of the phone screen.

Make sure to follow up with candidates you have spoken with to let them know the status of the recruitment.