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Anyone can say they can build a bridge, manage employees, or balance budgets, but it is harder to provide credible support for your claims. For this purpose, references often make the difference between the dream job and not getting the job.

Here are some key steps in using your references effectively:

  • Always ask permission
  • Choose your references wisely
  • Three (3) or more references are recommended
  • Give your reference a copy of your resume
  • Reference letters need to be original, personalized copies
  • Avoid overloading your references with calls
  • Keep your references updated
  • Remember to thank those who have helped you!

You don't need to include "References available on request" on your resume.  Some people only share their reference sheet if it is specifically requested. However, it's acceptable not to follow this guideline.

See a sample reference sheet.

See a establishing references tips.