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What Is A Reference In A Resume

Who To Ask For References If Youre A Student Or A Fresh Graduate

How to write References for Resume in Free Resume Maker App #10
  • Teachers and professors.They can testify to your class participation, performance in your school projects or how well you can work in a team.
  • Coaches and leaders. They can endorse you for your leadership skills or the ability to work with others.
  • Contacts from your volunteer work. They can endorse you for your willingness to help the community, motivation and skills. Plus, volunteering is almost always impressive.
  • Employer from your part-time job or internship. Even if you stayed in your job only a few months, your previous employer can speak best about your work ethic.

Set Up Your Reference Page

In general, it is a good practice to list all your references on a separate page. This page is usually the last page of your resume. Also, when writing such a list, ensure you maintain consistency with font style, font size, margin and colour scheme across your resume. This showcases your professionalism.

How Many References To Add To A Resume

Assuming you are using a separate, dedicated references page, the ideal number of references to aim for is between 3 to 4.

In some cases, you may include up to 5 to 6 references, though generally you should limit yourself to a lower number unless specifically requested to do otherwise.

When selecting your 3 to 4 references, it is important to keep a few factors in mind:

  • Which references hold the highest prestige in their positions, making their inclusion on a references page notable?
  • Which references can provide the most relevant information about your work ethic and skills for the job you are currently applying for?
  • Which references do you have the strongest relationships with who will go above and beyond to recommend you to a hiring manager?

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How To Write A Resume Reference List

When applying for a job, it is common for potential employers to ask for references. A reference is an individual that can vouch for you and your work ethic. It’s important to prepare a list of references to present to the employer at any time during the hiring process. In this article, we show you how to build a reference list and provide a template and example to use.

How To List References On A Resume

Resume references sample 2010

Many people end their resume with a generic statement like, References available upon request. This is an obvious and therefore unnecessary statement. Its much better to simply list your references on a separate sheet of paper. You can then submit the list along with your resume or simply have it ready in case someone asks for it.

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Follow Reference Request Etiquette

If youve decided to include someone on your reference list, be sure to ask their permission first. You can find details on asking people to be a reference for you with email templates and examples in How to Ask Someone to Be Your Reference. Additionally, let them know they may be contacted by your potential employer. This is another reason to avoid placing the reference on your resume: If youre sending out resumes for several jobs, you may not have the opportunity to give your references ample warning.

Provide your contacts with details on the job youre applying for and an up-to-date resume to help them prepare. If they decline, be sure to thank them and gracefully move on to your next option.

While references are valuable for employers, you should follow their lead when deciding how and when to send them. Whether listed on the job description or asked by a hiring manager, follow directions carefully.

If a list of contacts isnt specifically required, simply send your resume without references and any other requested documents like applications or cover letters. If you are asked to send references, develop a separate document instead of placing them directly on your resume.

When An Employer Requests References

In some cases, an employer will request references in a job posting. Specifically, they might ask for a list of three professional references with telephone numbers and email addresses. Follow the instructions when you submit your references. Unless instructed to do so, do not include the list on your resume rather, create it as a separate list to send to the company.

This list should include each references name, job title, company, address, phone number, and email address. If the job listing asks you to submit a list of references but does not tell you how many you need, include three on the list. This is the typical number of references that employers want for each candidate.

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Last Thank The Person After You Request A Character Reference

When someone provides you with a reference, it is important to thank them for taking the time out of their busy schedule to help you. You may want to write them a thank you letter or email after the reference is completed. This is a common courtesy to express your gratitude. Also, dont forget to make them aware of the outcome of the job interviewing process.

Professional References Vs Personal References

References: Are You Making a Resume Mistake?

Depending on the nature of the job, you may need professional references as well as personal or character references. Professional references, such as a previous supervisor who can discuss your job performance, should be able to confirm that you are qualified and competent. In comparison, personal references, such as a college professor, previous coworker or friend, should be able to vouch for your character and abilities.

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What Information To Include On Your Reference Sheet

On your reference sheet, you should list each reference with the following information:

  • Name
  • Phone Number
  • Email Address
  • Reference Description: Write one sentence explaining how you know or have worked with this person, where, when, and for how long.

Theres no need to include your references home or work addresscompanies arent going to be mailing them anything. And if a reference expresses a strong preference for a certain method of contact, its OK to put next to that line on your reference list.

To keep things easy for the hiring manager, its also a good idea to include your own name, phone number, and email at the top of the sheet .

Can I Ask A Family Member Or Friend For A Reference

You might be wondering, well my friend or family member is well-spoken and they know me better than anyone else, so can I use them as a reference?

The answer is no, that would be a bad idea.

Though they might know you well enough, they arent reliable references in the eyes of the recruiting professional. Their personal relationship with you makes them biased.

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Including References On A Resume Is Simply A Waste Of Space

You only get a small number of pages, usually 12 pages in the private sector, to share your career narrative and convince employers that you are qualified for the job they’re filling. Don’t waste any of this precious resume space to include references something an employer won’t need to look at until you’re much further along in the candidate selection process.

Instead, focus on providing the details that will convince a recruiter or hiring manager to contact you for an interview. Remember, your resume is designed to get you the interview. The details you highlight on the resume should support this goal.

While it varies from company to company, most employers won’t ask for your references until they’re ready to reach out to them. This typically doesn’t happen until you’ve made it through the initial interview rounds and are among the final candidates for a job. If, for any reason, an employer wants your references earlier in the process, rest assured they’ll give you a chance to provide them. There’s no need to place references on your resume when they won’t be used until you’re one of the final candidates.

That said, you should brainstorm a list of potential references as soon as you start submitting job applications so you’re ready when an employer requests your references.

Resume References Example: How To Write Your References

Professional References on a Resume

For example, if we were writing up references to accompany Alexa Campbell’s resume, they might look something like this:

When choosing your references, select 35 people who you have insight into your hard and soft skills and who you trust to say good things about you and your job performance. Click on the following link for more information on how to select the right references for your job search.

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What Are Professional References

Professional references are persons who can vouch for your qualifications for a job based on their insight into your work ethic, skills, strengths, and achievements. Typically, a professional reference is a former employerManagement TheoriesManagement theories are concepts surrounding recommended management strategies, which may include tools such as frameworks and guidelines that can be implemented in modern organizations. Generally, professionals will not rely solely on one management theory alone, client, colleague, teacher, supervisor, etc.

References may provide correspondence that serves as a proof of service, length of employment, achievements, and qualificationsFinancial Analyst Job DescriptionThe financial analyst job description below gives a typical example of all the skills, education, and experience required to be hired for an analyst job at a bank, institution, or corporation. Perform financial forecasting, reporting, and operational metrics tracking, analyze financial data, create financial models. When choosing the ideal professional references to attest to your qualifications, go for persons who previously observed you while in a productive capacity either at work, lecture rooms, or in a volunteer setting.

How To List References

Before you begin your job hunt, gather your references onto a Professional Reference Page. Include each references name, title, organization, phone number, and email address.

List your references starting with your most impressive or important reference.

Dont annotate your application with resume references available upon request. This outdated practice only uses up valuable space and restates something that every hiring manager already knows.

Instead, create a dedicated references page separate from your resume, and attach it to your application.

Next, list each reference like this:

Proper professional references format

Company / University your reference works atFull address of your references company / universityPhone numberEmail address

Never include the personal address of your reference on your reference page, because hiring managers dont contact references via snail mail. Plus your reference may not want you to share their personal information with strangers either.

Underneath each entry on your resumes reference page, you should also make a note clarifying your relationship with the reference, and how long youve known or worked with them.

Finally, if you want to save time formatting your reference page, download our resume references template and fill it in yourself:

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Give Your Career A Heads

Professional references can increase your chances of success, but you need to avoid the other pitfalls of the job search. Start with a strong resume that shows you off in the most flattering light possible. Need some help with that? Get a free resume assessment today from Monster. We can show you all the little ways you can improve your resume and become someone for whom references will go out of their way to praise.

Decide Whether To Add References To Your Resume

Resume Writing Tips : How to Put References in a Resume Step-By-Step

If you are unsure whether you should include references on your resume, the answer is most likely no. Only include references if the employer has specifically stated that they want to see them. Putting them directly on your resume can take up space, so put them at the end if the job post asks for references.

Otherwise, wait for the hiring manager or recruitment officer to explicitly request your list. You should have a well-formatted and presentable reference list ready for when this happens. You also do not need to fill up space on your resume by writing that references are available upon request. Employers generally assume this, and they ask for a reference list when and if they need it.

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Read The Application Instructions

Read the application instructions carefully, as the employer likely mentions references. If not, you don’t need to provide them on your resume or in your cover letter. The application instructions also may have important information about other aspects of your resume and references, like the format your resume should be and how many references the hiring manager may want you to have.

Rather Than Putting References On Your Resume Type Them Up On A Separate Sheet Of Paper

Include the person’s first name and last name, current title and company name, email address, and phone number. Be sure to check with each of your references ahead of time to confirm that the person is willing to be your reference and to verify which phone number and email address they’d like you to share with employers.

It’s also helpful to add a line that explains to the reader how you’ve come to know this reference. For example, it could be as simple as mentioning that you worked together in Company XYZ’s marketing department from July 2015 to November 2017 or that another reference was your direct supervisor at ABC Institute between 2018 and 2019. You don’t have to write a paragraph explaining your relationship to a reference, but it’s nice to provide the employer with a little context.

When you type up your references, considering using the same header information and font style that was used for your resume so that the documents appear to be part of one overall package, even if they’re not attached to one another.

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Why Do Employers Need References

Employers typically request references from their top two or three candidates in order to learn more about each person, factoring that information into their final decision. References are an opportunity for a potential employer to learn more about your past work and impactâand to gain an outside perspective on any lingering concerns.

How To Make A Separate Resume References List

Sample References Document For Resume

A separate reference list is a smart alternative to adding references directly to your resume.

In addition to being prepared easily in advance to ensure that you have a reference list handy for any interested employers, they can also be unobtrusively added to your resume should a job posting request them.

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Why Its Not A Good Idea To Include References On Your Resume

There are many reasons why its not a good idea:

1. Privacy issues

Back then, a resume was a private and confidential document that the candidate printed on a paper, sometimes sign on it, and send to the recruiter in an envelope through mail. When the recruiter receives it, they go through the resume do the shortlisting and interviewing and send the resumes to the trash.

Eventually, with the resume becoming a digital document found easy ways to reach the recruiting manager in seconds, the confidentiality diminished. Today, a candidate can apply to hundred job openings with their digital resume before the coffee on the table gets cold.

Many candidates have their resumes posted on LinkedIn and other job search websites making them accessible to millions. Now, your manager unlikely would allow you to put his email and phone number on your resume attracting unnecessary calls and subscribing to unknown email lists.

Identity theft and hacking are problems of the century professionals often face and we cant deny the importance of it considering our electronic footprint across multiple channels such as email, credit cards, online banking, and how everything is closely knitted with a couple of passwords.

2. Resume Length

The time that the hiring managers are keen to read your whole professional biography as the resume is over. Candidates dont have the time to write and the recruiters dont have the time to read.

Your resume should consist of the following sections:

When And Why Employers Want References

During the job application process, you will most likely be asked for references who can attest to your qualifications. The company may want to verify your credentials and speak to your reference givers to gauge your ability to do the job well.

Typically, this request occurs either when you submit your job application or later in the application process, when the hiring manager is close to making their decision.

The employer will typically specify how many references to include on your list, as well as what contact information you need to provide for each reference.

You will need to format your list of professional references either to include with your application materials, give to the interviewer, or else to email to the hiring manager later on in the hiring process. The employer will typically advise you on how and when to provide references.

As with all communication with a potential employer, from cover letters to thank-you notes, your list of references should be formatted professionally, easy to read and understand, and free of any typos or errors.

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These People Are Not Professional References

Professional references don’t include family members.

Professional references have an incredible amount of swaying power during a job search. They can be the difference between you securing the job and getting passed over entirely. Not only do you want to make sure that your references are saying good things about you, but they also have to be professionals themselves. The last thing you need is a hiring manager calling your old, more-than-slightly wacky boss who has a penchant for F-bombs and crude humor.


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