Who to Reference?

Meg Applegate, Certified Resume Writer_Job search coach.jpg

Including references on your resume will date you as an older job seeker (even if you aren’t one). This common practice from thirty years ago has dissipated today.

However, according to Jobvite’s 2018 Recruiter Nation Survey, 59% of recruiters speak to professional references during the hiring process.

So how do you cultivate professional references and submit them in today’s job market?

Ask for them! Request references from previous colleagues or bosses. New graduates with little work experience, ask college professors who know you well and can vouch for your skills and work ethic.

Submit references when asked. Follow a job posting’s directions on this. Typically, you will submit 3-5 names with contact information on a separate document from your resume. I recommend using the same contact information header as your resume so it is obvious the document belongs with your application materials.

Notify references. Ensure your references are prepared to speak knowledgeably about you. Arm them with information about the opportunity, your resume and specific stories that will speak to your accomplishments. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been contacted by a company to give a reference when I had NO IDEA I was listed as a reference. Avoid this faux pas. Make yourself and your reference look good!

Now is a good time to start building your reference list for your job search in 2019. Ask colleagues you trust!