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In this article, you will learn how to list references on a resume from step-by-step writing guides. See the reference-request email template and the examples of references on resume below, to write the most professional reference list on your resume.
References on a resume are details of professional contacts who have previously worked with the candidate at school or at work. A recruiter might contact a few of the referees on the job applicant’s reference list, to gain further information about the candidate’s work ethic, professionalism, and personality.
Adding references to your resume is not recommended except that it is specifically requested on the job posts or by the recruiters.
Here’s the reason.
Including your personal references on resumes can take up valuable “resume space” which a candidate should be using to highlight his/her qualifications and experience. Therefore, it is best to provide references to a recruiter once an interview has been conducted and references are asked for.
Some of the job seekers might be wondering, why don't you need to put "references available upon request" on your resume? It is not necessary to include “references available upon request”, as most of the companies will request for references if a candidate is interviewed and being considered for the position.
💡 Do note that due to cultural differences in recruitment among countries, references might not be necessary during the entire job search process in some cases. Job seekers need to pay close attention to the requirements & instructions on the job posting.
Another aspect to consider is the company’s culture. A traditional company would appreciate a resume that ends with “references available upon request”. While a modern company would request for references at the latter end of the hiring process, once a candidate is selected to further proceed with the interview process.
If you have made up your mind to include references on your resume, the reference section should be put at the end on a resume, as it is a part of a resume that a recruiter will only consider to read after fully reviewing a candidate’s credentials and experience.
When including references on a resume at the end of a resume, aim to include a minimum of two to three references. A reference section on a resume should provide the same information for each reference and follow the same format as the resume, in terms of font, structure, and tone.
Please refer to the resume references format below.
Example: resume references section format
|Name||Current position||Contact info||Relationship|
|Tim Cook||Apple / CEO||(012) 345-6789 / |
Creating a separate job references page can be a great way to organize your personal references on resume when recruiters request for the information. In this instance, ensure that your resume references format and style is the same as your resume. Often the job references page will be emailed to a recruiter when it is requested, together with another copy of your resume.
Please refer job references page format below.
Sample: reference page format for resume
You might wonder which resume references formats works the best. Here are the pros and cons of including references as a reference section on a resume or as a separate reference page.
Including a reference section on a resume has the following pros and cons:
Including a separate reference page for a resume has the following pros and cons:
When including character references in your resume, consider adding them at the end of your resume, after your personal profile, qualifications, and work experience details. This will give recruiters the chance to decide whether they would like to read or omit this section, once they have read through your qualifications and work experience.
If you opt for a separate reference page for your resume, include it as a separate sheet. However, your reference page should follow the same format and structure as your resume. A separate reference page could be sent to a recruiter once references are requested.
5 essential references details to be included on a resume:
5 optional references details to be included on a resume:
1. Your reference’s work address.
2. Your relationship with your reference.
3. How long you have known each other.
4. The projects you have worked on together.
5. A few lines from a letter or a statement that your referral has written about you.
The number of references a candidate has to include would depend on the job title, the candidates experience level and any specific details requested by the recruiter.
In the case of a reference section on a resume, as space is limited, aiming for two references is sufficient. If on the other hand, a candidate chooses a separate reference page for a resume, it is ideal to include at least 4 references. A separate job references page will also provide the candidate the space to include additional details about a reference and their working relationship.
For freshers (fresh graduates)
For experienced job seekers
Writing tips for reference request emails:
Reference request email samples
Hi / Dear (Name),
⬆ depending on the work relationship
Hope you are well.
I am currently looking for work and would like to require your permission to include you as a reference on my resume.
I chose you as a potential reference since we have worked together for many years, and I know that you would have a good understanding of my work ethic and abilities. I have also attached a recent copy of my resume for your kind consideration.
If you wish to contact me, please reach me on (contact number).
Hope to hear from you soon.
Mr. John Smith
Title: General Manager
Company: McCallan’s logistics PLC
Company Address: McCallan’s logistics PLC Building, Washington DC.
Contact number: 011-555 4321
Email Address: [email protected]
Contact number: 222- 54678192
|Name of reference||Company & Title||Contact number & Email||Relationship to the candidate|
|Mrs. Jenny Labroid||GE Group / |
|(545) 326-4724 / |
Mr. Jacob Pereira
Mr. Greg Green
Mr. Radley Shaw / Group Facilities Manager @ Hilton Hotels
Contact info -
[email protected] / 011- 9998796
Radley was my immediate boss for 1 year when I was working as a Facilities Executive for Hilton Hotels.
Endorsement statements -
“Nick was a hardworking Facilities Executive, who always went the extra mile to ensure projects met deadlines. I was sad to see him leave and hope he will join Hilton once again.”
Ms. Chad Andrews (Restaurant Manager at Shangri-La London)
Contact info: [email protected] (email) / 066 - 567892177 (mobile)
Relationship: Chad was my direct manager at Shangri-La for over 5 years.
Extract from the reference letter: “Kai worked with me and my team at the Golden Globe Restaurant Shangri-La. He was a hardworking server who had excellent customer service skills.”
Mr. Sam Smith (The Branch Manager when I was working as a Branch Executive for London Telecom)
Current title & company: Branch Manager / London Telecom
Contact information: 099- 33445566 (mobile) / [email protected] (email)
Endorsement statements: “Henry was a hardworking, skilled Branch Executive who always found ways to upsell while maintaining excellent customer relationships.”
Referee: Ms. Jane Rogers
Current title & company: Administration Head @The London Eatery
Contact information: 044- 67892351 (mobile) / [email protected]
Relationship with the referee:
Jane was an Administration Executive, when I was working as a Junior Accountant at the London Eatery.
“Shane was at The London Eatery when I joined the company. He was very helpful with guiding me through the standards and procedures at The London Eatery.”
Mr. Michael James (Editor at The London Times)
Company address: 4, Rover Road, London
Contact info: 055- 88997700 / [email protected]
Michael hired me for The London Times as a senior writer and I have worked with him for over 7 years.
“Ben has been a Senior writer with my team for over 7 years. He has produced award winning articles for The London Times and has won numerous prizes for his work.”
Ms. Cary Russell