What Is a Professional Reference?

A professional reference is an individual who can confirm the workplace skills, qualifications and abilities necessary to perform a job of a job applicant. This can include previous managers, supervisors, clients or business contacts.

Professional references are often requested when applying for a new position or job. This type of reference differs from a personal reference. A personal reference is an individual that knows the candidate outside the workplace environment and can attest to certain personality attributes.

When providing the contact information for a professional reference, include his name and job title and his current employer, address, phone number and email address. Before submitting the contact information, be sure to gain the reference's permission to share it with the potential employer.