PeopleChecking Advise On The Benefits Of Written References

Written References

United Kingdom (30 June 2010) – PeopleChecking, a service dedicated to offering employee background checks and employment screening services, feel that companies should request written references when interviewing potential employees instead of speaking directly to their previous employer over the phone.

References are increasingly becoming something of a legal minefield, especially as more people are applying for vacant positions due to the recession. PeopleChecking recommends that instead of telephoning provided references when employee screening, they should instead seek a written reference of their time in previous employment.

The danger is that comments from an ex-employer over the telephone can be misinterpreted and dates of employment can be hard to remember if they aren’t expecting the phone call. Comments about their suitability for a role they are applying for and their abilities can also be inaccurate – especially if a long time has passed since the candidate worked for that employee. PeopleChecking instead recommends requesting a written reference which will be a lot more accurate, as the author will have more time to gather their thoughts and give a balanced opinion on the employee.

“Nothing is ever off the record when you’re telephoning somebody to request a reference, especially if it’s negative. Mud sticks and they could really affect the candidate’s chances of employment, especially if they make an accidental off-the-cuff remark,” says Mathew Armstrong, Business Development Manager at NorthgateArinsoPeopleChecking. “Written references are a lot more accurate and allow people to collate their thoughts to give a reasonable representation of the employee’s time in their service. We’re not suggesting you discount telephone references entirely, but you’re more likely to get a fairer representation of the candidate if you request a written reference.”

To find out more about PeopleChecking and the employment screening services they provide, visit their website at: or telephone 0800 035 0545

About PeopleChecking:

NorthgateArinso PeopleChecking is the leading provider of candidate online individual background checks and employment solutions in the UK. PeopleChecking provides a service enabling organizations to confirm that recruits (and existing employees) are who they say they are, have the experience and qualifications they claim to have, and are eligible to work in this country.


NorthgateArinso PeopleChecking,
Thorpe Park

Thorpe Road


Tel: 0800 035 0545
Fax: 01733 312 347

Adams Lee

Adams Lee

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