Listing and submitting references for jobs

Setting up references is an important piece of the job search process.

As youth in high school who are current and future job applicants or job seekers, prepare yourselves to showcase your references. When people apply for jobs, potential employers will ask for references. Job applicants need people to speak on their behalf to help a potential employer learn more about an applicant’s skills, abilities, character traits, etc., and confirm that he or she is the right fit for the job. Author, Martin Yate, in Resumes Win Interviews, References Win Job Offers, on CareerCast.com states how a candidate will gain a job offer over another candidate because of the quality of his or her references.

How should a job applicant list references on a resume? Should they be listed on the resume at all? Robin Schlinger on Careerealism gives reasons why references do not belong on a resume. References on a resume do not protect the privacy of references. In addition, not having references on a resume gives the job seeker the opportunity to alert their references about the phone call or e-mail their references may receive.

Can job seekers use the statement, “References available upon request?” Lindsay Olson in the U.S. News and World Report states it’s a given that job seekers have references and will provide them in a particular stage of an interview process. Also, adding this phrase wastes space and if hiring managers are interested in contacting your references, they will request the information from the job seeker according to Heather Huhman of Come Recommended in an article by David Mielach of the Business News Daily.

Here is some information for providing reference from the Virginia Tech Career ServicesReferences page:

  • Job seekers should provide their references when they are asked to provide it.
  • Job seekers may offer their references if they reach the interview stage and have not been asked for references.
  • Job seekers should not send reference information with their resume unless it has been requested.

Michigan State University Extension has resources on the Michigan 4-H Career Preparation website to assist youth in learning about resumes. As a current or future job seeker, get the insight or information needed to showcase references correctly.

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