Reference Check Form

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Whether you are only launching your business or already having a successful entity, it is crucial to hire professional employees. Here, you have two paths: to trust every single word of the candidate and take them or to check what they say and verify it in order not to be disappointed later.

If you choose the second path, a reference check form is exactly what you need! It helps employers to reveal the information of the employee from the previous place of work to avoid hiring a dilettante.

What Is The Reference Check

A reference check is a component of the hiring process chain where the employer asks the candidate to provide their professional or personal information from the previous working place. In the high-level references, one may find recommendations from coworkers or directors of the exact employee with whom they worked.

Earlier, all the reference checks were conducted via telephone calls or in-person meetings and conversations. Even though nowadays it is still important to have these meetings, sometimes it is more appropriate to have to know the applicant remotely, especially during the Covid pandemic. Thus, the employer can hold this procedure with the help of a formal document.

The main purpose of the reference check is to reveal the professional characteristics of the new employee. Usually, it is about personal features such as sustainability, responsibility, striving for new knowledge and personal growth, etc., plus professional skills: diligence, teamwork skills, regular attendance, high quality of the work, and so on. However, all of these traits should be proved by any evidence. Additionally, it includes one’s job title(s), reason for separation, salary, and additional open questions.

In general, a reference check is a form that lets hiring managers and recruiters save time and effort by gaining information about the candidates’ achievements and characteristics by just reading the filled document.

Moreover, it is beneficial not only for the company representatives but also for the candidates as they do not need to waste time traveling to the company’s office and be afraid to give the wrong impression about themselves due to the nervous atmosphere of the first conversation.

How Does the Reference Check Work?

Now, when you know what the reference check form is about, you may want to know how it works. So, not rarely the process of reference check was done by a durable phone call during which the hiring manager of the company had not only to keep the conversation going but also to verify the information on the go. Undoubtedly, it was highly inconvenient for both of the speakers.

Fortunately, with the presence of the reference check form, both sides can ease the procedure. With its help, the applicant can send the form online, and the HR manager will have an opportunity to estimate it remotely, too.

The initial template of the form already has some common questions about the applicant’s characteristics. For example, “Were there any performance issues? Please explain”, “What are the candidate’s weak points?” and so on. However, one can change the questions and describe the qualities of the employee. Moreover, the new employer may send the request to the previous one to tell about some additional characteristics of the applicant.

So, the first thing to do for the applicant is to ask (via email or in-person) the former director, manager, or a coworker to fill in this form for them, including all the personal or professional features. Next, they send the completed form to the new company and wait for the answer. If the manager likes the described features, the company invites the candidate for a personal meeting.

In another situation, the potential employer should get consent from the candidate to contact their former employer to get the reference check. After that, the potential employer creates a list of interesting questions to send to the former one and wait until they respond.

Reference Check vs. Employment Verification

Many employers know the employment verification procedure more and better than the reference check. So, what is the difference between these two methods?

Employment verification is the process during which the future employer verifies the candidate’s working experience and achievements with a previous employer. Similar to the reference check, the main purpose of this method is to gain information about the candidate’s characteristics, achievements, and head’s opinion about the worker.

The main distinction between the two approaches is that the reference check takes less time and effort to complete.

Since employment verification is handled via telephone call or a long testimonial, it also takes a lot of time of the head managers or even directors, and the comparison also shows that the reference check is more convenient for the employers.

Benefits of the Reference Check

Except for being considered the most modern approach for estimating the candidates, the reference check has many advantages for both sides of the recruitment process:

  • As is mentioned, it takes little time and effort for the former employer to fill it and for the potential employer to read and check it. Moreover, it may not be verified by the latter person as it was with the employment verification approach.
  • It does not make the candidate feel shy during the very first conversation since the new employer already knows some information about them, which already makes the meeting more endearing. Moreover, it does not leave a free space for an applicant to make up something about their previous experience.
  • It also uncovers the details that the applicant may not want to mention or did not know about themselves. It makes the situation more open to the potential employer and gives perspectives on recruitment.
  • It will not make the applicant or the new employer attached emotionally to each other as it may happen after the first meeting. Thus, it will not disappoint the candidate if they will get the rejection.

How to Fill Reference Check Form

To fill the Reference Check document correctly, follow the steps below:

Step 1

In the first section, enter the name of the candidate, the name of the reference, their relation to the applicant, the name of the former company, and the date of the reference check.
Step 1 to filling out a reference check form - main info

Step 2

The next step is to provide information about one’s employment, including the salary, dates, and position(s) of working, and reasons for leaving.
Step 2 to filling out a reference check template - employment info

Step 3

These fields are followed by a table in which the reference ticks the qualities of the employee. It is possible to change any characteristics or factors if needed.
Step 3 to filling out a reference check sample - qualities

Step 4

And the last section of the form is provided for the open questions that are interesting for the potential employer. They can include any information which is wanted by the latter side. Nevertheless, the reference has the right to leave some fields empty.
Step 4 to filling out a reference check form - open questions