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What are you thoughts on employer needing to check your references before making an offer?

I think references are somewhat useless because the people we give are obviously going to say good things about us.


I recently went through 2 final interview rounds at two different companies, and one took forever to contact my references before giving me an offer. Meanwhile, the other company gave me an offer after a few hours of my final round; no references were needed. The company that took forever to check my references said that it's because they do their due diligence very carefully, even though they know that the references will say good things about the candidate.


So it got me thinking do people think that a company that contacts their references is better than one that doesn't?

🀝 Interviewing/Offer
πŸ‘₯ Hiring
12
CuriousFox
WR Officer
+13
Senior Account Executive
What about the references that don't answer the phone? How would they decide?

Seriously. I don't think one is better than the other. But it DOES give you a glimpse of what their internal processes look like. Might be a good warning.
Nairobi
Politicker
+7
BDR
That's what made me decide between the two companies. They couldn't reach out to one of my references because his email bounced at first, and instead of contacting my contact via other channels like a phone call, they just waited until I got an offer and then hurried up lol... like you are in sales, one channel might not work, but you can call or LI message
Incognito
WR Officer
+11
Master of Disaster
Well here in NY you are only legally allowed to confirm employment, and nothing more. My last company hired a 3rd party to do background checks and confirm employment. They were also not allowed to contact any previous employers who did not have a publicly listed phone number. Considering that many of my previous jobs were private, it became quite a problem.Β 

New employer didn’t do jack. They knew who my connections were, so that’s all they cared about I guess πŸ€·β€β™€οΈ
Nairobi
Politicker
+7
BDR
Oh interesting, didn’t know that about NY and I’m in NY.
funcoupons
WR Officer
+11
that's queen coups to u
I think employment references are a total waste of time overall. Now, I'm not talking about asking around to your network about someone, but the formal references candidates list.

Like you said, people are only going to list references that are going to give a glowing review. What's the point? Sure, verify position/tenure/are they eligible for rehire that sort of thing but anything beyond is worthless imo. The only exception would be for leadership/executive positions, I think it's worth checking for those.

If you can't form your own impression from me and trust that I'm telling the truth, don't hire me.
Nairobi
Politicker
+7
BDR
You’re right for leadership/executive positions it would be useful.

That’s legit what I was thinking when that company said they couldn’t give me an offer until they talk to all my references...
ThomasRCallahanIII
Politicker
+5
Enterprise Account Executive
I wouldn't use this as a benchmark. Some companies do it as part of compliance or as a CYA. Doesn't necessarily mean it's "better" than the other.

That said. I would use the length of time they took to check your references as a benchmark for what their other internal processes look like that may impact your job i.e. legal, sales ops, marketing, etc. and ask questions around it.
Nairobi
Politicker
+7
BDR
That's what I was thinking as well. I did ask them questions about it because it took them five days to contact two people, and it wasn't because of their process but simply because one of my references couldn't be reached out by email, even though I provided them his phone + LinkedIn.
Mooney
Tycoon
+13
Director of Sales
Asking for references is dumb. Back channel referencing is becoming more common. If you are looking at a company that needs to talk to references, you are probably walking into a lot of procedures that need to be followed to the T.
Nairobi
Politicker
+7
BDR
That's how I felt, and it turned me off, so I decided to go with the other company.
CaneWolf
Politicker
+12
Call me what you want, just sign the damn contract
I have no issue with doing references. I have a serious issue with them taking forever to do it.

Doing or not doing references does not make a company superior. But how you value somebody's time - that's important!
Nairobi
Politicker
+7
BDR
AMEN, it doesn’t take forever to contact two people... I’m curious to know how long is too long for you?
CaneWolf
Politicker
+12
Call me what you want, just sign the damn contract
One business week at the maximum.
Kevinbacon
Opinionated
+6
Sales Manager
Agreed.Β  I usually point them to my LinkedIn recommendations which i make sure to get from every job.Β  Stupid outdate part of the process
Nairobi
Politicker
+7
BDR
It really is a stupid outdated part. Smart move for your LI recommendations, I need to start doing that. Do you ask people to write you recommendation when you leave a Job or before that?
Kevinbacon
Opinionated
+6
Sales Manager
I've done it both ways, but usually my move is to ask right after i've done something for someone or over beers lol.Β 
DataSlangah
Politicker
+7
SAE
Did you tell your references to say "Vandelay?"
Nairobi
Politicker
+7
BDR
Tbh I had to google Vandelay πŸ˜… but now I get the reference and it’s funny, I should have done that!
DataSlangah
Politicker
+7
SAE
I guess I am showing my age - LOL!
Show 1 more replies
Sky
Good Citizen
Corporate Sales Engineer
I have an issue when they take forever to get back.
Nairobi
Politicker
+7
BDR
Right, that triggers me.
GDO
Politicker
+7
BDM
I get why they do it. But I do not think it adds any value.Β 
Flippinghubs
Opinionated
+7
Account Executive
there for a reason, but can be redundant i find more often than not and timelyΒ 
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