Checking References Guide for your Managers

Checking References Guide for your Managers

Give Them the Tools & Tips They Need to Verify a Candidate's Information

Reference Checking Guide

This Reference Checking Guide provides reference information to help your staff understand company expectations and legal limitations related to checking references. It will typically be used by Hiring Managers and HR; however anyone involved in conducting reference checks will find it a useful resource.

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This Reference Checking Guide is used to provide reference information to help your staff understand company expectations and legal limitations related to checking references. It will typically be used by Hiring Managers and HR; however anyone involved in conducting reference checks will find it a useful resource. 

The template provides best practices and tips to enable the first-time or seasoned reference-checker to verify a candidate’s references consistently, thoroughly, and in compliance with employment laws.

It’s not uncommon for a job application to contain facts that are less than truthful. This makes verification of information provided on applications, in resumes, and during interviews by prospective employees a critical step in all hiring decisions.

Why use the Reference Check Guide

  • We recommend these guidelines be provided as a resource to anyone in your company who is involved in the reference checking process. It’s best not to assume that everyone ‘just knows’ how to conduct reference checks, especially when there are legal implications if mistakes are made. 
  • Using the same guidelines for each hire creates a consistent reference-checking process and helps staff avoid common pitfalls.
  • The process outlined in the guide will be refined by the experienced managers in your company and will help new managers to quickly get up to speed with reference-checking best practices.

What you risk by not using the Reference Check Guide

  • Questions may not be asked in compliance with employment laws.
  • Staff may make assumptions and take shortcuts.
  • You may not get the information you need from a reference check.

Small Business HR Tips for Reference Checking

  • Create your reference check guide to clearly identify how reference checks need to be conducted.
  • If your culture is strongly defined and results are an important component for success factors, your procedures should include standard reference check questions that flesh out the candidate's ability to work in a high-performance and results-oriented culture.
  • Top talent tend to be connected with other top talent.  Reference providers tend to be former respected co-workers, peers, and managers of the candidate you've already vetted as a high performer. Create a network of top talent by keeping in contact with reference providers who are ultimately pre-qualified leads for future open positions. Use LinkedIn to connect with the reference provider and classify them in their profiles in your LinkedIn account as potential future prospects. Be sure to only send the LinkedIn invitation once the candidate's move to your company is public.

Can I preview & download this HR template?

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Reference Checking Guide

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Which HR kit is it included in?

The Reference Checking Guide can be used on its own as a stand-alone tool, or as part of the Checking References & Hiring Kit for Managers, which is one of 4 ConnectsUs Recruiting & Hiring Kits.


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