How to Put References in a Resume

Avoid one of the most common resume mistakes and don’t put references in your resume unless requested by the job announcement or employer.

References are a vital part of the hiring process and employers request them for a variety of reasons. Most of the time they are used to validate information found on your resume. Employers generally want at least three references, but it’s a good idea to have a list of 5 to 7 available. A list of references should be compiled before sending out your resume. Take some time to brainstorm and on a blank piece of paper write down the names of family members, friends, co-workers, teachers, supervisors, managers, and former employers. Contact the people on your list and ask them if they would be willing to be a reference.

Once your list of references is compiled take some time to prepare them for the potential employer contact.

The types of questions asked usually depend on the relationship you have with your reference. Are they personal or professional? A professional reference like a supervisor or formal employer may be asked more technical questions related to the job announcement and employment history. General questions asked of a reference are:

Again, do not put references in a resume! When requested by the employer or job announcement put your references on a separate page included with your resume. Use this example of a

as a guide.