networking, references, job search
NO CATEGORY / 01 February 2017
How to Make the Most of References in Your Job Search
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Clare Barkey
Branding Intern


Never burn any bridges


You’ve heard it many times before and it could not be more accurate. Many jobs will inquire about references throughout your job search. This is another reason why relationship building is so important throughout your school, internship, and job experience. You brand yourself with a resume and hope to sell yourself with an interview. These are all important aspects, but sometimes recruiters want to hear it from other sources that know YOU. Even if they don’t ask for it, having relevant references to vouch for you is a huge advantage to have on your side. That being said, it is only necessary to include references if the job you are applying for asks for them.


Some great people to use as references:




This infographic is here to show you that you are not alone in the job search. Many candidates are tired of feeling like just another number in the application and interview process. Many people like you are using LinkedIn for job leads, and the recruiters know this. References can be built through interactions with professionals in your industry on LinkedIn. This global network is a big influence on recruiters. So launch your profile up a level, keep it current, and don’t be afraid to reach out to as many people as you can. If you are able to build relationships through LinkedIn, you never know how it will benefit you in the future.


Never underestimate the power of networking and driving your curiosity forward. You never know what connections will help you in getting that dream job. By maintaining professional relationships with these people, they respect you and feel comfortable backing up your skillset to a reliable company. By maintaining a personality and authenticity, they will also remember you and be more willing to help you out down the road. 


One thing to keep in mind while building up a network of references: be vigilant about who you are using. Make sure to discuss with your chosen references ahead of time, you don’t want them to be blindsided by a call. The job site, Monster, reinforces, “ It’s a professional courtesy to ask people’s permission to use them as a reference, so they know to expect a call sometimes in the future. If your references respond with surprise and confusion when a potential employer contacts them, it gives the impression that you are unprofessional or disorganized.” So stay organized and give your references full disclosure ahead of time. Don’t forget to always use the power of  "thank you" ! It goes further than you expect.


What are you waiting for? Get organized and start growing that great list of references! Write it down in a notebook, and keep it as current as possible. Always stay true to yourself and the career path you are creating for yourself. If you want to build upon your skill set and create some new references, sign up for ProSky today!