A reference checker is simply the person an employer asks to check the job references you gave them. After you make it through the interview process, a potential employer needs to know if you are as good as you seem. Or might there be some less desirable things about you that won’t work in the job.
So the employer assigns someone in the company or hires an external reference checker. And their job is to call / contact all or some of the people on your references list. And to ask questions in a way that helps figure out your fit for the company.
How deeply does a reference checker dig?
A reference checker may be new to reference checking or someone who’s done it many times. So some reference checkers just make the calls and don’t pump too hard for deep, dark secrets. But others (I admit I was one of them) try to dig deeper to make sure we’re getting the person you seem to be.
The good news is … most references are pretty obliging and will make a point of helping your case. Also, for legal reasons, they’re more careful nowadays about revealing anything that might turn into a lawsuit.
But I did get people “off the record” to at least give me hints that helped eliminate potential bad fits. So it pays to check carefully with all your references beforehand, to make sure your reference checker will give you an “all positive” review.
NOTE: Reference checking is only one part of the employability review. Many companies also have services that do background checks. Of course, there are those companies that do little of either. Still, best to assume both.
About Those References
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