Sign up with your email address to be the first to know about new products, VIP offers, blog features & more.

Job Reference follow up

job reference follow up

A beautiful gesture!

Job reference follow up

You would be surprised how many candidates unintentionally burn bridges with their references after the job was landed. Don’t think it was you? If we are not reaching out with updates to these important contacts, that bridge may be burned. Today’s post is part three in a series of three posts on the topic of handling our references: how to strengthen the bond between us the candidate and our reference. The first two posts in the series were, “how many references are needed?” and “how do we make sure our references say what we need them to say?” 

We successfully interviewed for our dream job, were offered the position and the HR department confirmed that the references checked out. Congratulations. You did the work and you earned the position. It’s time for the Happy Dance. But before we do this, we need to do one last thing. We need to connect with our references and let them know the good news.

Our references just did us a solid and we need to acknowledge their gesture.

  • Let them know you landed the position and are excited for your first day.
  • We couldn’t have done it without our references help.

You would be surprised how often this courtesy step is missed and references are taken for granted.

Here is the list of my pet peeves in order of pet peevie-ness, from mere annoyance to heinous.

Mere Annoyance

I got the heads up from the candidate saying I am listed as a reference. Thank you, I appreciate the heads up. We talk about the position, the interview and how I can guide the person checking the references to the land of confirmation. All that is good. What pisses me off is when I don’t hear any update on whether the position was landed or not. I gotta hear it like all the other common people. Via LinkedIn or Facebook! I should be in the inner circle on this one. I am supposed to be special. Updates people, Updates!

A pisser

I don’t mind a request to write a letter of recommendation. What I do mind is that I don’t know where to start. I don’t know about the job or the interview questions the candidate was asked. One way to keep me happy is to draft the references so that I can cut and paste your words into the email. Who doesn’t want to help someone who is taking the initiative to help themselves?


Getting an unannounced call from a company looking for a reference check on a prior employee. If they are just looking for a title, salary and dates worked, no problem. That is my job as an HR provider. But when I am listed as a professional reference and didn’t get a heads up. . . sheeesh! This is heinous. I want to know what position was landed and how the interviews went so I can reinforce weak points and confirm strong points. It’s a game people and I play to win! Courtesy call people, courtesy call!

Thanking our references with a bottle of wine, a pound of coffee or some small gesture is always a good thing. If I am your reference, I will make it really easy on you. Anyone that is familiar with me, knows I am consistent with the below recommendations. It is hard to say no when you are given a choice.

How to say thank you to HRNasty

If you want to thank me for being one of your references, or all the job tips, (and you know I will close the SHIT out of the person checking references), thank you very much. That is a very nice gesture, and here are the two choices, feel free to pick one.

  1. Just send me a thank you card attached to this beauty here from Farlex Fly Reels. Just tell the CEO, Tim Gelinas that HRNasty sent you. He knows what I like. And if the card is too much trouble, don’t worry about it. The reel is plenty. 
  2. A dozen homemade peanut butter chocolate chip cookies. Just put them in a ziplock back and send em’ my way. In this particular case, a card would be nice because the cookies will be gone within 2 cups of coffee and I will want a memento of your success.   

The folks that we ask to be our references today are probably the same peeps we will ask to be our references in the future. We need to treat this crew right.

Personalize your gesture

A short note on the bottle of wine written in metallic ink is always a nice touch and gives our reference a reason to brag about their accomplishments when they share your gift with their friends. You can engrave that fly reel to me if you want. It’s always good to be brought up in our references circles in a positive light. These references are influencers and hang out with other influencers.

We landed the position; let’s make sure we thank the folks that helped us get there.

Congratulations! Now you can do your Happy Dance.

See you at the after party,


nasty: an unreal maneuver of incredible technique, something that is ridiculously good, tricky and manipulative but with a result that can’t help but be admired, a phrase used to describe someone who is good at something. “He has a nasty forkball”.

If you want to ditch the corporate ladder, take the elevator and subscribe to the weekly updates here. Knowledge drops are free and I promise, no spam. If you want to say “Thank you” “Like” us on Facebook here, I read all comments below. Thank you!