Thursday, May 17, 2012

References and the Job Search

References are a vital part of the job search, but there are many misconceptions about who to use and how to give their information to employers. Here are the do’s and don’ts of references.


Have at least three references.

Make sure your references are willing to speak to employers about you before giving away their information.

Give your references a copy of your resume so that they can speak to your various accomplishments.

Tell your references about the positions you are applying for.

Include only professional references – professors, former supervisors, etc.

Bring your list of references with you to job interviews.


Include someone as a reference who can’t speak specifically about your skills.

State “References available upon request” on your resume.

Give a list of references to an employer unless they ask for it.

Include any references on your resume itself. References belong on a separate sheet of paper formatted with the same type of header as the resume. Include their information in the following order:

   Job Title
   City, State Zip
   Phone Number

References allow a potential employer to learn about you beyond your resume, and hear first-hand accounts of how you work with others. Employers take what your references say seriously, so make sure to follow these guidelines.

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