Who is a Good Referral to List on a Resume?

When filling out an application or updating your resume, there’s always one question that might leave you unsure: references. With two to three required, you need the top people to vouch for you to a potential employer. All it takes is one wrong word to cause this person to doubt you as a candidate and decide to pursue you no further.

Instead of panicking, think through the situation logically. The first step is to decide the kind of references you need for the position. Look at the requirements and job duties and think about the people who could speak to those abilities in you. Once you have a rough list, edit it based on what you believe each person would say about you. Before you submit your final list, always ask the person if you can use them as a reference. Even if they’ve said yes before, alerting them lets them know to be aware of potential calls or emails from unknown sources.

One of the easiest ways to know who to list on your resume is to assemble a list that you can reference. Here you can include the person, their contact information, how you’re acquainted, how long you’ve known each other, when you’ve used them before, and if you’ve received permission. This will make your life easier when it comes to submitting resume.

But who should you add to the list?

Former managers

This one can be tricky because not every former supervisor will be the best fit. Choose those you had a good working relationship with and still maintain some level of contact today. Perhaps your first manager when you were a teenager did think highly of you, but a request out of the blue might do more harm than good.

Coworkers and colleagues

This category of reference is excellent for speaking about your presence in the office and your professional skills. They’ve worked with you directly and understand what you can do, meaning that when you choose wisely, you have a powerful ally.

If you’re applying for a new position, it may be unwise to use a current coworker, no matter how many good things they have to say about you. If your goal is to keep your search a secret, pulling them into the conversation is potentially a risk.

Volunteer connections

A reference you’ve volunteered for and/or with can add another layer to you as a candidate. They can speak about you as well as your attitude. It also shows you as a more well-rounded applicant.

Meet your match with LaJoy Group

You spend time perfecting your resume and we’re here to take it up another level. As one of the top employment agencies in Michigan, we offer a number of career opportunities ranging from temporary to direct hire. We have opportunities in clerical work, professional settings, manufacturing, and home health care. Get started today!

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