A number of industry sources have documented that a person will change careers approximately seven times during their working years. While it is a virtual “given” that you will be writing (and rewriting) your resume over the course of your career, the crucial role played by your references is often overlooked. You need to ask yourself: “Have I taken the same care in creating my reference list as I have my resume?”
Simply put, it’s essential that you, as a job candidate, take a close look at your references each time you make a change to your resume.
At JobReferences.com, powered by Allison & Taylor Inc., the Reference Checking Company, during our many years of experience contacting reference providers, here are actual answers to a very important question:
- Question: Why do you recommend the candidate?
- Answer: “He/She shows up to work on time.”
- Answer: “He/She does not cause any problems for me.”
- Answer: “He/She does not take a lunch hour.”
These comments do not speak to the job performed, skills or accomplishments.
Many times, your reference provider needs direction on how to present you to a potential new employer.
Make sure your reference list meets these 5 criteria:
1) Does your reference list reflect the best people to cast you in a positive light to a prospective employer – or could there be someone else who would be a better choice?
2) Are your selected references truly going to give your prospective employers the kudos you’re hoping for? If you’re less than certain that they will, you’d better check them beforehand before they go “live” with your prospective new employer. Have a reference check conducted beforehand to make sure.
3) Do your references have a comprehensive knowledge of your skills and abilities, and can they fluently convey this knowledge?
4) Are your references people with whom you’ve stayed in touch and kept updated on your career moves and successes? Will they be able to provide current information about you to a prospective new employer(s)?
5) Your reference providers should have a letter summary from you of your abilities and accomplishments to discuss when they are contacted for a reference.
The new look of references provides a chance to underscore the information you’ve provided in your resume and to make a powerful statement to a prospective employer. Present your reference list, formatted as shown below, during the application process for that first good impression. Or, proactively offer it at the conclusion of an interview. The hiring manager will be impressed with both your list and your initiative in offering it.
For a critique of your references or assistance in rewriting them to the new format, please click here. A good reference list is one key to securing new employment – make sure yours is a part of your employment-seeking arsenal. For further details on services available to assist the job seeker, please visit JobReferences.com, powered by Allison & Taylor Inc., the Reference Checking Company.