Let’s talk about the value of using reference checks when hiring. This step is often undervalued or skipped because we assume we’ll only hear good things about the candidate. That sounds logical — someone wouldn’t list a reference who wouldn’t vouch for them. However, the purpose of doing a reference check is to better understand the values of the person you’re interested in hiring. Not only do you want to know they are a good person, but you also want to confirm areas that have come up during the interview process. Does the reference agree with their strengths? Are there red flags or yellow flags? We can ask specific questions to uncover more information to help decide whether the candidate is qualified.
Reference checks can also benefit qualified candidates. Say we have a great person whose references are only saying positive things, then we should focus on figuring out how best to work with this person. Not everybody is motivated the same way or works the same way. During reference checks, we can better understand how this candidate operates by asking specific questions.
These questions help you better understand the person and figure out how best to work with them, providing a running start before their first day. Don’t overlook the importance of reference checks. Dig in to discover valuable information about your candidate. If you decide to hire them, you will be prepared and set up for success.