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How to Put References on a Resume?

WHY should I put references on a resume?

Don’t do it. There’s absolutely no reason why you should ever include references on a resume. There are several reasons for that: - Waste of space. Your one page can be used much more effectively. - Problematic verification. Recruiters don’ t have enough time to verify references on every resume they receive. They’ll only check references of the final 2-3 candidates. - Privacy. Your references have agreed to let you give their contact information to a potential employer. Don’t betray their trust by sending their references to just about anyone.

In some specific situations, it’s still okay to include references together with your application. It’s not a standard but certainly acceptable in some scenarios: -

  • When a job listing requests references from the get-go, you should include them without much hesitation.
  • If your reference is someone renown in the company or industry. Sometimes you don’t want to wait until the last round of interviews to play your strongest card.
  • If you’re a fresh graduate. The chances are you still don’t have enough experience to fill for entire resume. Moreover, as a student, you have no authority yet. Let others do the bragging for you.

WHO should I ask for references?

Short answer, anyone respectable who can vouch for your ability and character. As a rule of thumb, try to obtain 3-4 professional references and 1-2 personal references.

Professional references attest your professional ability. Ask your past superiors and partners to put a good word for you. It goes without saying that you should never ask for a reference someone less experienced than you.

Personal references vouch for your character. It can be any esteemed person from your personal life: past teachers, non-profit leaders, instructors, etc. Just make sure you don’t include anyone from your family.

HOW do I include references in my application?

Instead of putting references directly on your resume, create a separate job reference page.

Use the same visuals or letterhead you used for your resume. This extra step will give your job application a neat, consistent look. Little details like these go a long way in making a great first impression.

List your references based on how relevant each of them is to your new position; the most important ones should go first.

Each of the references needs to be supplied with detailed contact information. Don’t forget to include name, position, company or organisation, address, phone and email, as well as their relationship to you.

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