Home > Careers, Employment, Uncategorized > Who should I use as a referee?

Who should I use as a referee?


Let’s imagine you are applying for your dream job. You have all the skills, experience and knowledge the employer wants, you really like the look of the role and the organisation. You think you could have a bright future. But the job advert or application form asks you to supply referees and you don’t know what to do.

References are very important to employers. They use them to confirm that you are suitable for a job and a reliable employee and, for this reason, they usually place high value on a reference from a previous employer. Employer references usually include the bare facts (such as dates of employment, your role and so on), identify the responsibilities you had and assess your performance, time keeping and motivation.  They can be critical in deciding whether or not to make an offer of a job.

If you have worked during or before your studies, one of your referees should be your current or most recent employer.

As a student or graduate you should also supply an academic referee. This will usually be your programme tutor or someone who has taught you and knows you well enough to make accurate and useful comments about you. These will usually focus on the same sorts of areas as an employer reference – turning up on time, meeting deadlines, gaining skills and knowledge, successfully contributing to group projects all demonstrate that you are a potentially good employee.

Don’t forget to ask referees before you give their details. Most employers and tutors are very happy to do this but it’s polite to ask and prudent to make sure you have their up-to-date job title and contact details.

For more information about references see https://www.gov.uk/work-reference or https://grad-careers.co.uk/careers-advice/cv-writing/references/.

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