What Happens When Your Business Conducts a Reference Check?
Employees are the most important aspect of any business. They can make or break your business’s operations. Therefore, owners and managers have a major incentive to adequately screen potential candidates for employment. While the interview process, background check, and other pre-employment procedures are important, your hiring managers shouldn’t forget to thoroughly check a candidate’s references.
What is a reference check?
In short, a reference check is just a collection of all the questions & information gathering that go into verifying a candidate’s references. Your hiring managers will contact a candidate’s supplied references to figure out more about the candidate’s professional experience. These references can consist of previous supervisors, co-workers, teachers, etc. Sadly, some people like to exaggerate or completely fabricate aspects of their professional history, and if you hire one of these people, then your company could suffer in the long run. By diligently checking each candidate’s references, you can better weigh everybody’s strengths, weaknesses, and honesty when making a final decision.
What kinds of questions are asked?
First and foremost, you should verify what a candidate was like to work with. Questions from the candidate’s reliability at work to whether or not they were ever violent are important to ask so that you can get a better sense of what they are like in a work environment. Getting this information from a few different perspectives is crucial in creating a more rounded picture of the candidate that goes beyond their resume.
After some of the basics questions are covered, you can ask about their general attitude, cooperation with coworkers, punctuality, ability to work in a team, and other such questions. Furthermore, you should try to get an idea of their general strengths and weaknesses. While it may not always be possible, your hiring managers will benefit immensely from learning about specific conflicts, tasks, and achievements. Finally, you should ask them if they would rehire this candidate when applicable.
Be mindful of the law
On top of the aforementioned questions, you should try to come up with more relevant and specific questions to ask a candidate’s references. The more you know about them, the better suited your hiring managers will be to make an informed decision. However, it’s important to remain compliant with local laws and regulations.
For example, many companies prohibit managers from providing references, and they may only confirm a former employee’s dates of employment and position within the company. Failure to comply with your jurisdiction’s laws can result in stiff penalties and bad press, so make sure that all of your managers understand this.
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