From job aspirant's point of view telephonic interview have many advantages over personal interview. For starting you don't have to worry about your looks and dressing sense. Just think about giving answer with fluency.
If you wish to crack your telephonic interview then first you need to know why telephonic interviews are conducted in first place. The answer is simple - organisation has large number of applications and this is a very cheap and effective way of sorting potential candidates.
Now that you know why telephonic interviews are conducted you might have guessed what kind of question to expect in such interview - yes! mostly human resource(HR) questions, the one that tests your communication skills, not just over telephone but in real life as well. Confused? Don't worry! Let me tell you about one of my first technical interview that was conducted by Thorough Good, a consulting firm.
They (it was a two-member team) called me on my mobile number which the HR team member had taken in advance. They conformed if I was ready for the interview even though we had already decided on the time and date couple of days back. Anyway after conforming they called me again, this time they were using speaker phone. There was some problem with the quality of voice so they asked if I have any other number where they could call. Lucky my home phone was free so they called me on that number. Its nice to have a hands free handy because this interview can go on for hours non-stop. Mine was only 45 minutes.
I greeted them and they starting asking about myself, my family, education and interests. Since I had given some personal interviews before so I was pretty comfortable with such questions. After the basic HR questions they asked me If I was aware of which field their organization was into, it might sound strange but as a fresh graduate its very likely that the applicant is not aware of what exactly is Business Intelligence. But I had done my homework before the interview date and had good knowledge about the organization, its services and activities. So it was early for me. These type of questions are very common because this shows how much you are interested in job an in the organization. When they see some kind of commitment from your side they believe that you are really interested in this job.
After asking company related questions they started asking questions related to the projects I did during my studies. Now wait before firing me with questions like "but you said telephonic interviews are only for communication skills". There was no technical question involved in that part either. They wanted to test my people skill during that period. One interesting question they asked me was about a team project. They asked if I faced any problem, any unrest in the group. And what part did I play in that situation, was I able to give suggestion to solve that problem, was I able to resolve the dispute - and I was only a team member, not even a manager. There motive was simple. They wanted to know what kind of team member am I.
Another interesting question they asked me was related to my summer internship. They asked if I had notice any special skill in any senior person working in that organization and if yes how exact was did I became aware of that skill and benefit was I able to gain from his skills. And finally they asked me why I wanted to join this particular field and if I don't get this job then what would other option do I have in my mind.
Anyway here are few tips to keep in mind if you are appearing for telephonic interview: