10 Areas to Cover When Requesting a Reference

It is important to gain a comprehensive evaluation of the candidate’s performance in the workplace in as concise a manner as possible. In order to do this, consider covering some of the key areas below:

1) Confirmation of employment record:

Confirm their job title, role responsibilities, department and starting/leaving dates whilst at said referee?

2) Attention to detail:

Did the candidate’s work demonstrate a keen attention to detail; with particular regard to fully understanding the requirements made of him/her and in accurately working towards set tasks?

3) Quality of Work:

Is the candidate qualified to work in this role? Did he/she show a desire to produce work to the highest standards? Were they in line for a future promotion?

4) Teamwork:

Was the candidate a beneficial member in any team format; able to both take instruction from their Line Manager and contribute to group work goals? Do they prefer to work independently to set tasks? Do they work capably with management and colleagues alike? Did they ever take management of a task and other colleagues?

5) Effort:

Did he/she demonstrate that they thought past their instructions and show a desire to learn? When presented with areas to improve upon, did they actively work towards doing so?

6) Reliability:

Would you consider the candidate to be a reliable individual? Did they complete tasks on time, meet all set objectives and work within legislation and corporate policy?

7) Character:

What would you class to be the candidate’s top three personal traits/strengths? How did they react to situations of conflict or when under high pressure? Are they creative and innovative or prefer to take instruction?

8) Deadlines/Targets:

Was he/she motivated by team deadlines/targets and able to work towards them or do you think that they intimidated and inhibited them? Did the candidate like to set their own targets / goals? What was their biggest accomplishment whilst working for you?

9) Communications:

How did they correspond with clients and colleagues? Are they more likely to pick up the phone or write an email? Are they strong record-keepers? Is the standard of their copy suitable for the attention of clients?

10) Overall Impression:

In conclusion, would you believe him/her to be suitable for a (eg. client-facing administrative) role? Would you re-hire them in the future? If not, why not? Which areas would they benefit from training in? Is there anything else you wish to share with us?

We hope that this brief guide proves useful for you but if you have any questions then please don’t hesitate to contact us.

The Barclay Search Team

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