The staff in Human Resources will work with hiring supervisors and, if requested, assist with checking references on the final external candidates prior to the offer of employment.
All reference information should be documented.
The hiring supervisor/search committee chair checks candidates’ references. Information from previous experience or educational endeavors is generally an important part of the final decision; therefore, references are usually checked on all candidates invited to interview on campus.
Written or verbal permission should be obtained from job applicants prior to any reference checking. Documentation regarding all reference information on unsuccessful candidates must be retained for three years. References on selected candidates must be forwarded to the Office of Human Resources for inclusion in the new employee’s official personnel file.
Candidates for some positions submit bearer references (references obtained and submitted by the applicant). If the candidate is a finalist, a direct check with the source of the reference should be made.
In cases where there is a degree requirement for the position, it is a best practice to verify a candidate’s educational qualifications. Requests for dates of attendance, date(s) of graduation and type(s) of degree(s) or diploma(s) should be made to the educational institution listed on the application and/or resume.
Usually references can be obtained by telephone. Increasingly, employers will release information by written request only. A written reference request form may be obtained from the Office of Human Resources.
Request job related information only. Questions should be directed to specific requirements of the job for which the applicant is being considered. Stay away from subjective areas. Ask only questions that lend themselves to factual and quantitative job-related answers. A Reference Check form is available on the Human Resources’ website.
Obtain Permission From Job Applicants Prior to Checking References. Written permission clarifies the College’s intent to seek references. The Ithaca College application includes a statement that, if signed by the applicant, fulfills the requirement for a written release. This written release ensures that no misunderstanding exists between the College and the applicant.
Updated November 10, 2017