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  1. #21
    The Undying freefolk's Avatar
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    You at least have three people in the world who think you're an okay employee.
    .

    "This will be a fight against overwhelming odds from which survival cannot be expected. We will do what damage we can."

    -- Capt. Copeland

  2. #22
    The key is to put "reference available upon request" at the bottom of the resume.

    I've yet to ever be asked to provide them.

  3. #23
    Just put references upon request on your application/resume. Most companies don't give a shit.
    “If you don't believe me that is too damn bad!”

  4. #24
    Warchief
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    Reference is just there to confirm you worked at the job and carried out the role you claim. Anything else is just fluff. Its why its illegal for people to give you a "bad" reference when asked. They simply need to confirm you worked there and carried out the role, its not about them giving an opinion on you.

  5. #25
    My CV had like 5 pages , two were the CV the others were copies of diplomas and reference from the head of a hospital wing. I've gotten offers almost everywhere i've placed ( that actually needed people too) . The CV did two things : 1. stand out from the rest because it wasn't just one piece of paper and 2 : Everyone knows people lie in their CVs so my diplomas and recomendations were proof i wasn't .

    So yeah while you think recomandation isn't necesary it is some proof that you aren't bullshitting 80% of your resume. And a good start over others that don't have. The more you know about someone in a sea of unknown people the more likely you are to hire them i presume.

  6. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by Sanstos View Post
    As if im going to ask someone who hates me or even borderline thinks im uninteresting.

    What do employers expect to hear? "No Sanstos is a terrible person, dont hire him or he'll poop all over the Begonias"

    Whats the point of wasting time calling people who will vouch for us blindly?

    Even my "Professional" references with PhD's and high up county/state careers will lie for me if I asked (not that I need to)...

    I suppose im just curious.


    An employer can only legal confirm dates of employment

    No professional company would say anything beyond that as it opens them up for lawsuits.

    of course there is lots of 'off the record talk'

    it doesnt matter, if your a piece of shit, they will figure it out soon and get rid of your useless ass.

  7. #27
    Quote Originally Posted by Sanstos View Post
    As if im going to ask someone who hates me or even borderline thinks im uninteresting.

    What do employers expect to hear? "No Sanstos is a terrible person, dont hire him or he'll poop all over the Begonias"

    Whats the point of wasting time calling people who will vouch for us blindly?

    Even my "Professional" references with PhD's and high up county/state careers will lie for me if I asked (not that I need to)...

    I suppose im just curious.
    I'll give you the employer point of view. Not directly an employer myself, but I have been heavily involved with hiring people, so I know the game.

    Problem:
    Hiring is difficult. Anyone can have a paper saying they know how to do a job. Significantly fewer are actually good at what they claim to know.

    I work in the programming business. Google-style coding challenges for interviews may be good at rooting out applicants who can't code themselves out of a paper bag - but they don't really tell the full story. Even if an applicant doesn't know how to code a red-black tree on demand doesn't mean he can't find out. If I judge a candidate on a strict interview test alone, I'm just fooling myself as an employer; the candidate may turn out to have an exceptionally clear-headed mind for example, the candidate that can discern that you don't need a red-black tree is worth a hundred programmers that can implement one.

    In the end, there is always some level of risk involved. Employers have to take changes in hiring.

    Mitigating the Hiring risk: Word of mouth matters

    So we always think it over, twice or more as needed. We seek more data. We do background checks - that's literally the main job of an HR department these days.

    And we rely on word of mouth. The world is a small place. Someone always knows someone. You're six degrees of linked-in separation away from anyone. There has been several occasions where my boss has asked me if I know a candidate. And several occasions where the answer is yes. At such a point, my opinion matters a lot. I give my verdict on a candidate. Yes, knowing a candidate makes me biased, that's implied. I typically want that candidate hired, that's also implied. But I have to be professional. If we hire X, and it turns out X has a problem I didn't disclose, that counts as a demerit to my reliability as well. If I raise it early, and the candidate is still hired, that's how it should be. Being objective with references is what trust in business is about.

    Adding more mouths

    Professionals in companies, we do talk to each other, and there is that code of honor. Mangers in same-technology companies know each other to some level. They don't ever lie about reference statements. If you recommended someone that failed hard, that means you failed hard. Some day, you may have to pay for that. So: we raise risks with our heads, but we recommend people with our hearts.

    Sometimes, we have candidates nobody knows anything about. That's where references come in. Of course, that's also where the quality of the references come in.
    If you put your old boss as a reference, and I know this is a person I can trust - that's a GREAT reference. I'd like to talk to that person!
    If you put your old boss as a reference, and I don't know this person - that's still a GOOD reference. I'd like to talk to that person!
    If you put your mother as a reference... meh. Who cares? We both know she'll say you're the best person ever, it's a waste of time to ask.

    So say you are applying, and you put your old boss as a reference. I don't know him, but I know his company. As your last boss is willing to speak for you, that means you didn't ragequit your last company. This implies you have a professional demeanor. It means you're willing to let me talk to someone who managed you earlier, and knows how you tick. As an employer, that's a fantastic opportunity to talk - "new boss to old" so to speak. The fact that I don't know the reference doesn't really matter.

    Yes, there will be professional courtesy involved in reference giving, and there is an implicit understanding that your old boss is not going to paint you in a bad light, at least directly. Your reference is working for you. Unless you are literally cannibal Hitler, nobody will say you are a terrible hire.

    But at the end of the day, there is that code of honor at play. We don't lie about references. There is a difference between these two statements


    "Candidate X worked in our company. There were no problems during his employment."
    Translation: I have nothing good to say about this candidate, do not hire!


    "Candidate X literally saved our asses during the last delivery. I really wish I could convince him to stay in my company. "
    Translation: Everything I just said is true. You're stupid if you don't hire him.

    I also get to ask more interesting questions, like "did the candidate take initiative?", "would he handle responsibility?", "was there problems with teamwork?", allowing me to answer the question of whether the candidate is a hidden gem or not. I would also ask questions like "were there problems?" and "why did he leave your company?". Again, there is a difference between answers here. I don't expect being given a bad-light statement ever. And lots of the genuine answers would typically fall under privacy laws where I don't even expect an answer. But I will ultimately get to a point where I know if the answers I'm fed are bullshit, or not. And in the end, that's the extent of the value of a reference I don't know. If I can convince myself that the reference is telling the truth, it's valuable input telling me whether to hire or not.

    Evil References?

    Yes, there is always the chance that you are such a terrible hire, that your former boss will actively lie just to get you to change to a different company. But... your old boss will lose credibility as well. And the world of business is based on credibility. One day, that reference may apply for a job at my company. I will remember he lied to me. It's why nobody ever lies when giving references.

    Omissions is the name of the game. When questioning a reference, look for the omissions!
    Non-discipline since 2006. Also: fails.
    MMO Champion Mafia Games - The outlet for Chronic Backstabbing Disorder. [ Join the Fun | Countdown | Rolecard Builder ]

  8. #28
    Quote Originally Posted by melodramocracy View Post
    I'm 80% certain that's the case as well in the US, at least for prior employers. The place can only say whether you worked there or not.
    My daughter works in HR. She is legally allowed to verify dates the person worked for a company and to answer "would you be willing to rehire this individual?" That second question while legally allowed is one most companies won't let their HR answer. She has told me stories from her previous employer (who didn't let it be answered) of people calling on references, and having a hard time not telling the people that the person got violent and the police had to be called to remove the person.

  9. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by Vakna View Post
    Depends on the job to be honest. If it's a career defining professional position then sure, but if it's like some pompous manager at a convenience store expecting an applicant to be interested in the company and what they do personally the manager is living in a dream world. Most jobs nobody actually gives a shit about, it's just a necessary stepping stone to getting the money you need to live. If you're one of those managers in a random store that expects such things all you are doing is milking lies from the employees, they don't care, they just want to do a job for some money. How many people in the world do you think are actually interested in the jobs they are doing?
    I, for the most part, agree. I havent really worked for a firm in which my fellow employees considered their positions within the company as stepping stones. At least not for a very long time.

  10. #30
    Our HR only contacts references that are related to the applicant's prior job. The key question here is if they are "hirable", meaning if they were fired for doing something liable (like internal theft).
    The wise wolf who's pride is her wisdom isn't so sharp as drunk.

  11. #31
    Quote Originally Posted by Sanstos View Post
    As if im going to ask someone who hates me or even borderline thinks im uninteresting.

    What do employers expect to hear? "No Sanstos is a terrible person, dont hire him or he'll poop all over the Begonias"

    Whats the point of wasting time calling people who will vouch for us blindly?

    Even my "Professional" references with PhD's and high up county/state careers will lie for me if I asked (not that I need to)...

    I suppose im just curious.
    To try and ascertain if you are a useless pos before they make the mistake of hiring you, basically

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