Chapter 2: Revitalize Your Job Search Documents

Other Considerations

How many references do I need?

Three references is usually the preferred and expected amount; however, this may vary from company to company. The more professional the reference, the better. If you have more than three, feel free to include them, this will reflect positively on you. List your references in the order in which you want them to be contacted.

What should I do if I don’t have any references?

Get some! Some of you may find yourselves in a situation where you haven’t had a lot of experience and therefore have limited references. To gain references, engage in volunteering opportunities, get a part-time job, consider participating in fundraising activities at your place of worship or in the community. If a job interview opportunity comes up before this, be honest, let them know you haven’t had much professional experience and offer up some long-time personal contacts.

Do I need to include “References Available Upon Request” on my resume?

The answer to this question often receives mixed reviews. You can state this simply at the closure of your resume, or you may choose not to include it, as it is often implied and not particularly informative to the employer.

Can I use reference letters?

Yes, however, most employers prefer references that they can contact by phone or email. If your reference has moved or retired, and employers cannot contact them directly, you can provide written letters you have received in addition to your reference list. Reference letters are also a valuable addition to include in your professional portfolio, when applicable.

Be confident that your references will recommend you to others without any reservations.


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Be the Boss of Your Career: A Complete Guide for Students & Grads Copyright © 2021 by Lindsay Bortot and Employment Support Centre, Algonquin College is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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