Q:

How is a letter of reference useful when searching for a job?

A:

Quick Answer

Reference letters state the potential employee's capabilities, background and qualifications, which are very important to the future employer. They also give the employee's personal qualities, achievements and accomplishments. A well-written reference letter gives a potential employer more information than getting it directly from the company.

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Full Answer

A reference letter with the title and a brief background of the writer gives more insight into whether the reference giver was in a position to determine how well the employee did her job. A good reference letter shows that the employee left the previous employer in favorable terms and contributed well in the company activities. This is also an endorsement by the company.

A reference letter also has the candidate's qualifications, highlighting skills and traits that relate to the position held. This may include specific accomplishments and achievements of tasks undertaken.

It also includes the number of years that the former employee has worked for the company, credentials and awards given. This sheds more light for the potential employer as to the what the employee is capable of achieving.

Personal qualities such as intelligence, willingness to accept responsibilities and showing initiative in the workplace are also included in the letter. Including instances when those qualities were evident in the assignment given go a long way in making the qualities meaningful.

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