When candidates have similar expertise and experience, how does a recruiter decide who to offer the interview? By what others say about the candidate. That is why having a reference page for your resume is critical.
As a general rule, find your references from your past colleagues, supervisors, and mentors. Unless you have a short employment history, try to focus on references in the professional field. However, if nobody comes to mind, feel free to use your favorite teacher.
Use A Resume Generator
To begin, find an online resume builder and choose a template for your resume. Most templates come with a cover letter and a reference list by default or have a reference section on the resume.
Online generators are pre-approved by HR professionals and most companies. The resumes generated by these tools are compatible with most online hiring systems, so you don’t need to worry about any information not showing up correctly on the recruiter’s side.
To use a builder, all you need is the information. Once you’ve chosen a template, simply transfer the information into the generated resume, then export it into the format required by the application system.
Contact Your References First
Before putting anyone down as a reference, make sure to get in touch with that person first. For one, you are courteous to the other person’s time and schedule by asking for their permission to be your reference.
Secondly, you can also fill them in on what position you want and how they can help. For example, let your references know if the job requires a particular skill set or what kind of company culture your prospective employer has.
Make A Standalone Reference Page
As we just mentioned, some resume templates come with a referral section. However, it is best practice to make a standalone reference page.
For one, this gives you more space, and therefore you can list more references as backup plans. Also, having a standalone page made out means you can print the page and take a hard copy with you to the interview. This serves as a helpful reminder for recruiters and increases the likelihood of them contacting your chosen referrals.
Prioritize Who You Include
The space on your page is limited. Therefore, be sure to only include the most valuable references. A few good choices include:
- Your direct supervisor from your most recent employment
- Colleagues who worked with you on the same project or were in the same
- Professional connections who are well respected in their fields.
When providing references, try to stay with people within a similar field to the job you’re applying for. Also, avoid using personal friends as referrals unless you have no other choices.
Some Final Tips
So, here’s a simple process to make a reference page for a resume. First, you start with a resume generator. Choose your template and fill in the information. However, make sure your references are aware of you using their information before you put anyone down. Give them some information about the job you’re applying for, or at least let them know they should be expecting a call.
Try to always use higher-level, professional references unless you’re applying for higher education or a teaching position. Finally, bring a hard copy with you to the interview. We wish you the best!
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