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Reference check

Question :

I quit my last job for several months and I am looking for a new job recently. The recruit agency said the potential employer will give me the offer until receipt the reference check respond by my last job.

The agency said that they experienced a case that my last company hasn't responded for 3 months for other candidate.  If under this situation, what I can do.

Moreover, will my last job comment my performance to new employee?  I haven't done the appraisal review before I left.  I just concern whether my last boss gives me negative comment.

Posted by Dawn on Sunday, 20 Oct 2013

Comments :

Fraser Douglas - Career Doctor

Posted Friday 8th November 2013 10:45:00 PM


Dear Dawn, Thank you for your question. From what I understand, you quit your job a few months ago and have recently received an offer from a new employer which is dependent on receiving a reference from your previous employer. Companies are not obliged to give references, the days of firms providing commentary on individual performance are long gone and most firms which do provide a formal reference will only confirm job title, dates of employment and final salary. The challenge then facing any future employer is how to confirm that you did perform the roles outlined on your CV and that you were also a valued member of staff. In my opinion this is all part of how you manage your career, you may leave a firm but you take with you your experience and your relationships, this is what makes you marketable and attractive when looking for a new job. A CV is just one part of your career history and is very two dimensional. I would suggest that you think carefully about the people you worked with, not just your boss but your colleagues, clients and vendors. Are there people within that list who would be happy to give you a personal reference letter or take an informal call from a potential employer? Asking people to comment on their experiences working with you will add colour and depth to your CV and, as these are likely to be people that you have a successful relationship with, not only will the comments be positive but you can ensure that they respond in a timely manner. This will hopefully help reassure any potential employer that you were successful in your previous role and will be a successful addition to their team. Another idea is using professional networking sites, as some sites allow your contacts to endorse your skills and also to leave positive comments about your abilities. Nowadays when conducting background checks, most employers will certainly search social media sites for additional information. Your online profile is something you control and you can tell your story in a much more compelling way than just through a ‘traditional’ CV and it may also help progress your application. I hope this answers your question and good luck in your new job!

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