ScrawnyRonnieScrawnyRonnie Member Posts: 112
Would just like some of your thoughts on my scenario.

As I've been applying for positions recently, 3-5 references seems to be a normal request during the application process. I work in a Help Desk position and my boss (Network Administrator) is the only other IT person in the organization. Coming up with 3-5 professional references seems rather difficult. I'm also in my first IT position so I don't have a previous employer who I could use to vouch for me. So...

Do I ask people who call me regularly for IT support to be references since they can attest to my abilities to a certain extent?

Is asking your current boss a no no? Not that she wouldn't understand my wanting to progress my career, but I'm not sure how to approach this one.

Lastly, how important are references really? I had an interview last week and I had 5 references, but nobody said they got a call about it. Looks like I didn't get the position even thought the interview went smooth and it's the exact same work I already do icon_sad.gif


  • DevilWAHDevilWAH Member Posts: 2,997 ■■■■■■■■□□
    references are often only called / contacted after a job offer has been decided. And are there to confirm what you have said rather than help make a decision. A lot of companies will only let the HR department supply a reference, as depending where you are it it not allowed to give a negative reference only a factual one. you current company may be asked "does Mr X really manage a £150million budget and design the NASA rocket that's on its way to Mars??" To which they can answer Yes or No, and they may be asked things like if your attendance is satisfactory. But its all very generic stuff and you can state that for current employer you don't want to let them know untill you have the job secured. In whice case you will be offered the job with "upon satisfactory references". So as long as you haven't lied in the interview you will be fine you will be fine.

    Personal references would be people out side of work, or people at work that you don't report to or work for. Often people just want to see that you feel you can put people forward that will speak up for you, and again very often they are not contacted. As before reference are there to collaborate you interview statements, not to add to them.

    When I was hiring it was generally only the previous company HR I would contact, and then it was after the job had been offered and simple stating waht the candidate had told us was there job role, responsibilities and duration of employment and asking for conformation.

    Later on for higher up positions references can become more important, but for junior positions I would not put in people you have helped. Just work HR contact details, a senior public servant or manager who can be a personal reference, and then possible a fellow work collage or freind in the same industry who know what you work like that you don't mind them contacting.

    But who ever you put for personal references always ask them before hand. I did get phone up by a company asking for a reference for a previous employee and while I was happy to give it, I think my being caught of guard did tell on the phone, and does not leave a good impression.

    Lastly dont worry about quantie , but the quality of your references, don't put any one down who does not know you and you would not want to be asked questions bout you.
    • If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough. Albert Einstein
    • An arrow can only be shot by pulling it backward. So when life is dragging you back with difficulties. It means that its going to launch you into something great. So just focus and keep aiming.
  • ScrawnyRonnieScrawnyRonnie Member Posts: 112
    I would guess that's why none of them were contacted after my interview last week because it didn't go anywhere from there.

    One previous employer I was contacted by said it was a numbers game for them when it came to references and they wanted 5 professional. I told them I only have 1 other person (my boss) who I work with daily and it would be hard to come up with that many. I ended up listing 3 personal and never got a call. I guess it just depends on the company then.

    I won't get too hung up on this, but I want to be sure I do everything I can to stand out. I tend to only apply to jobs that I currently do what they're looking for so I don't keep saying "no I've never used that/done that before" over and over again in an interview. I wouldn't mind a lateral move right now to a larger organization with room for growth and decent pay raises.
Sign In or Register to comment.