5 Must-Ask Questions for your Reference Checks

You have narrowed down your search and selected candidates that you would like to potentially bring on board – great! However, without a good reference check, you could end up making the wrong decision when it comes time to hire.

Having a great reference check can clear up any doubts you might have on a specific job applicant, but only if you know the right questions to ask. Getting your reference check questions prepared ahead of time can save you a lot of time and frustration when going through the hiring process.

So, what questions should you include in your own reference check when making the decision to hire? Let’s go over a few questions that you can incorporate into your own reference check to make the hiring process a breeze.

1. “How would you describe (your candidate)?”

It is important to build a basic understanding of who your job seeker is as an individual, and what better way than to ask those they trust with their reference?

Figuring out what type of professional a job candidate is takes a lot of time, more time than your interview can give with a first impression. While references can only tell you so much, their reflection of the candidate in question is still vital to the hiring process.

If the referee vouches for this candidate and gives you positive feedback on their experience with them, you’re in the clear. However, any hesitation or unpleasant feedback should be taken into consideration when hiring.

2. “When did (your candidate) start and end their last job?”

This question will help you verify the information your job candidate has given you in your interview. While your interviewee may have relayed information that seems genuine, checking in with their references will ensure their honesty, showing you can take their word in the future when they are working for your company.

3. “How did (your candidate) fare with other workers?”

Having great teamwork skills is a positive for any career, so you should find out how your candidate gets along with their coworkers.

This question will also help you get to know more about your candidate. If the referee gives you positive responses about their teamwork skills, you can be sure that your candidate will be able to work well with the team you already have in place. If not, you might want to consider how well they will assimilate into your work environment.

4. “What work was (your candidate) responsible for?”

While viewing someone’s resume and cover letter is a great way to get an idea of the work they were responsible for in the past, checking in with the references they provided will help you double check that what they have provided is correct.

You can ask this by describing the position your candidate is up for and ask referees if this position will fit their professional experience. Or, you can ask them about the specific skills listed within their resume.

5. “Do you have anything else to add about (your candidate)?”

This question allows you to open up the floor to referees and offer them a chance to fill in any information you might be missing. It will also help you tie up any loose ends that you may not have thought about, giving you extra insight into your job candidate.

With this question, you can ensure no stone gets left unturned when doing a reference check.

Incorporate these five questions into your reference check and you could see a positive change in your hiring process.