Tag Archives: careers

5 Quick Fixes To Make Your Resume Better


  1. Save the document with your first and last name. Can you imagine how many resumes recruiters receive named ‘resume’? Make it easy for them and guarantee that your resume gets in the hands of the right people, without getting lost. In addition, if you have a 2-page resume, add a header with your name on the second page. They may be printing it out, and there’s always a chance that pages could become separated.
  2. When possible, save your resume as a PDF*. Appearances are everything, and you want to make the right first impression. Saving it as a PDF will preserve the formatting, since you don’t know how it will appear to your recipient. Issues can arise based on what email provider someone uses. Better to be sure, than to have your resume appear choppy or not as originally intended. *If you’re applying online to a position, you may need to submit your resume saved in Rich Text (RTF) Format.
  3. Ditch the objective and add a Summary of Qualifications section. This can be 3-5 bullet points or a short paragraph that consolidates your top strengths and skill sets. You can easily tweak this to match the job description.
  4. Use the job description as your guide and test. Take your basic resume as a starting point. Go through the job ad, bullet by bullet, to see if what you have written on your resume matches the employer’s desired qualifications and duties. Switch out words to mimic the ad, or use synonyms whenever possible. If there is too big of a mismatch, this may be a clue that the job is not a good fit for you and that you don’t have the right background to apply.
  5. Remove your address and add your LinkedIn URL. The exception to this rule is if you’re relocating. In that case, add a line mentioning your move and the target date for when you will be at your new location.

** Bonus tip – To keep yourself even more organized, add the name of the company after your name. For example, JoeSmithAcmeCorpResume.pdf. This is especially helpful if you’re applying to multiple companies.

Want to learn more about working for CRH Americas?

Visit us at CRH Americas Careers.

We are North America’s largest manufacturer of building products and materials. In North America we adopted our parent company name to become CRH Americas, Inc. But, the strength, quality and legacy of our Oldcastle brand remains in our product groups, Oldcastle Precast, Oldcastle Infrastructure and Oldcastle BuildingEnvelope®, as well as our Oldcastle Building Solutions team.

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Are you getting the results you want from LinkedIn? 3 Tweaks To Try!


Whether you use LinkedIn for networking, personal branding or finding a job, there are tweaks you can make to perfect that profile.

  1. Reorder sections. Did you know you can change the order of current positions, education, volunteer experience and skills and endorsements on LinkedIn? If you want to highlight a degree, job (this works on current positions only) or experience by placing it first, this is a nice feature. skillsIt’s easy! Simply click on “View Profile,” then hover right below the pencil to click and then drag and drop the job, school or experience in the order you want. To rearrange skills and endorsements, click on the pencil and then click on the lines to drag and drop in the order you want. Put the skills you want recruiters and others to see at the top. Note – this may not always match the ones you’ve received the highest number of endorsements for.


As you can see in the box here, social media received the most endorsements. But say for instance, you want to emphasize your editing skills. Simply move that skill to the top.

The benefit of doing this rearrangement is to draw attention to the skills you want connected to yourself, highlighted in the order you want them to be seen. 

2. Request Revisions to your Recommendations
Look at the current recommendations on your profile. Are they a bit dated? Did you know you can ask for a revision? This might be a good thing to do to spruce up an older recommendation or have the recommendation call out different strengths. LinkedIn makes it easy to reach out and reconnect with the person who wrote that original recommendation. To start the process,  click View Profile and scroll down to Recommendations. Click on the pencil next to “Ask to be recommended.”

You will then see the current recommendations you have. Click the Ask for Revision box.



You can then type in your message in the box (as seen above). When you do this, it never hurts to ask if they would like you to also revise a recommendation (if you’ve written one for them in the past).  Never be demanding – you want to touch base on how they are doing as well and then politely position how you want them to focus on the revised recommendation.

3) Worried you might appear too dated? You can remove the dates of your education on LinkedIn. Click on view profile and then scroll to the education section. Click on the drop down. Instead of choosing the years you started and finished your degree, just leave it at year in both the “from” and “to” boxes and click save when you’re done. This tweak can also be used in conjunction with tip number one. You could remove dates and move a desired education to appear first (even if it wasn’t the most recent). The goal is to always position your profile with the most impressive and relevant information at the top.


Give these three tips a try. They don’t take much time, but can make a noticeable difference in how you appear on the site. As always, thank you for reading. Good luck in your job search!

Photo Credit: Pixabay

Want to learn more about working for Oldcastle?
Visit us at Oldcastle Careers.


Oldcastle is North America’s largest manufacturer of building products and materials. With more than 2,000 locations throughout North America, we are in constant pursuit of the next generation of successful decision makers, leaders and problem solvers. Learn more about joining the Oldcastle team HERE.

Follow us!  TwitterInstagramLinkedInYouTube, and Facebook for jobs and career advice.



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The Dolomite Group


The Dolomite Group is one of the largest suppliers of materials in the upstate NY area.


  • Started as a family run quarry almost a hundred  years ago
  • Founded in 1920 by John H. Odenbach
  • Dolomite quarries include locations in Penfield, Brockport, Le Roy, Walworth, Manchester, and Bath, NY. The Gates location makes asphalt and recycles concrete.
  • Dolomite also owns Shadow Lake and Greystone – depleted quarries that are now beautiful golf courses
  • Dolomite’s concrete plants produce concrete for residential, commercial and civil construction customers.
Ready Mix Concrete
Work for us:

P.S. Check this out! A recent story in the Rochester, NY Democrat & Chronicle explored the rich history of Dolomite, from its humble beginnings to its acquisitions throughout the years.

About our parent company:
Oldcastle – 
North America’s largest manufacturer of building products and materials. We have more than 2,000 locations throughout North America.

Connect with us:
Follow Oldcastle Careers on FacebookTwitterGoogle+Pinterest, Instagram and LinkedIn! And, join our new Talent Community for a monthly e-newsletter with job search advice, hot jobs and employee photos.


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6 Spring Training Tips For Your Career

Blackboard Time to get back in the game! We can learn a lot from athletes getting ready for the upcoming season. Whether you’re actively seeking a new job or just want to move forward in your career, follow this advice to hit that home run.

1) Better weather means easier opportunities to network. We get it. During the long, dark days of Winter, it can be easy to hibernate. Who wants to go to a function when it’s freezing out? This Winter was an especially frigid one for many parts of the country. Take advantage of the longer days and better weather to get out there. Where to start? Check online, your newspaper, local alumni group, business alliance, meetup.com and LinkedIn for professional events you can attend. Start small if you have to. Make a goal of attending at least one new event per month.

2) Recommit to your team. Finding a job should not be a solitary play. Just as one player or pitch won’t win the game, isolating yourself and thinking you can go it alone will only hinder your search. Involve your family, friends and former colleagues in your search.

3)  Practice makes perfect. Professional players make the game look effortless, but we all know it’s not. Your first round of resumes may not get a hit. Don’t give up! Have you tweaked your resume to fit each position? Are you applying for jobs that are a fit? Show your resume to a trusted friend, enlist the help of your college placement office or seek professional resume writing assistance. You’re in this for the long run. Be patient and remember that the job search takes time and has its ups & downs.

4) Create the right mindset. You may be on the bench for now, but remember – this is only temporary. Not every baseball player is in the game all the time.

5) Listen to the coach. Just as a coach leads his team, you have to lead your career direction, progression and job search. You are your own coach. Create a schedule for your search and stick to it. For instance, commit to a certain number of hours a day for reaching out to contacts, applying to jobs and following up. Think of it as your own training schedule. The job search is its own game, with its own set of rules.

6) Analyze your plays. Is there something you could have done differently? Maybe you were thrown off by a tricky interview question you weren’t expecting. No worries! Research answers to common interview questions at monster.com or careerbuilder.com.  Professional players don’t just go to their locker room after a game and call it a day. Post game is when the real learning and plans for improvement take place.



Oldcastle is North America’s largest manufacturer of building products and materials. With more than 2,000 locations throughout North America, we are in constant pursuit of the next generation of successful decision makers, leaders and problem solvers. Learn more about joining the Oldcastle team HERE. 

Follow us on FacebookTwitterGoogle+Pinterest, and LinkedIn!

© OldcastleCareers, 2014. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to OldcastleCareers with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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Don’t hide like a Sasquatch in the forest – get noticed!


Bigfoot’s LinkedIn Profile Leaves A Bit To Be Desired


A BigFoot pizza!

One day, Bigfoot will be found. And, if you want, so will you – by a Recruiter!

If you’re a top performer and your company is taking care of you, you may not be on sites like Monster.com or Careerbuilder.com. However, even if you’re not actively looking for a job, that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t be networking with recruiters and learning about new opportunities.

Don’t Be Like Bigfoot (who tries to hide from everyone)
Do the opposite, and figure out where recruiters hang out (on-line) and make yourself visible. Even if you aren’t interested, recruiters will reach out to you (if you’re not Bigfoot), present you with opportunities, and learn about what you may be looking for in a job.  You even have the chance to refer friends and colleagues. A good recruiter (like the ones here at Oldcastle) will search various sites and network with industry experts.

Keywords Count
Make sure you are on LinkedIn with up-to-date information.  Your LinkedIn profile should contain the same keywords that a recruiter might use when searching for candidates.

For example, Kevin Lissow, a Corporate Recruiter at Oldcastle, uses the following words and terms when searching for an IT Project Manager:

  • (“Information Technology” OR “I.T.” OR “IT”) AND (“Project Manager” OR “PM” OR “P.M.”) AND (“PMP” OR “Project Management Certification”) AND (“SDLC” OR “Software”) NOT “Recruiter”

Note – this is just one search string. Would you turn up in his search?  Think about keywords a Recruiter would use to search for someone in your industry or job function.  Do you need to modify your profile to be found?  Put yourself in the head of a Recruiter (if you dare) and think about the terms they might use to search for someone with your skill sets.   Better yet, ask a Recruiter.


Bigfoot image from infamous 1967 Patterson–Gimlin film

Think about it – Bigfoot does none of these things and none of the Recruiters I work with have ever contacted the elusive Sasquatch.

Don’t be a Bigfoot.  Make it easy for a Recruiter to find you, whether you are looking for a job or not.  You never know how that connection could benefit you in the future.

It’s Not All About LinkedIn
If you want to be found by a Recruiter, be sure to explore the other Social Media sites out there.  Oldcastle is represented on sites like Facebook, Google+, Twitter, and YouTube.  Be social, contribute content to sites, search for channels in your industry to share knowledge, and include Recruiters in that search so you can connect with them.

More old-school when it comes to networking?
Try getting out in the community at local networking events.  Meet those in your industry and your community.  Start networking.  Recruiters are in the business to search out good qualified candidates. They use many methods – including old fashioned networking.  

It takes time to build up your network, so stick with it and make it a daily practice.  While it may not pay immediate dividends, give it time.

A recruiter’s job is to find the best qualified candidate for the company they represent.  They read the applications that come in, they search the boards, they network and they utilize all available resources in hopes of finding the elusive best candidate.  Give yourself a shot and get out there.  Reach out to recruiters in your industry and start networking.

If you’re looking for jobs at Oldcastle, check here:  http://oldcastlecareers.com

If you want to join the Oldcastle Talent Community, check here:  http://oldcastlecommunity.monster.com/

If you’re looking for more information on Bigfoot, check here:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bigfoot

coreyAbout Corey: Guest blogger and Bigfoot buff Corey Listar is a Staffing Manager for the Oldcastle Recruiting team in Rochester, NY. He has a Masters degree in Career & Human Resource Development and over 15 years of experience in staffing, recruiting and human resources.

P.S. Please share this post if you found it to be helpful!

Want to read more by Corey? Check out his other post: What Walter White Can Teach You About Evaluating A Job Offer.

For more job search advice, follow us on FacebookTwitterGoogle+Pinterest, and LinkedIn. And, join our new Talent Community to receive a monthly e-mail with hot jobs, career advice and see what it’s like to work for u!


Oldcastle is North America’s largest manufacturer of building products and materials. With more than 2,000 locations throughout North America, we are in constant pursuit of the next generation of successful decision makers, leaders and problem solvers. Learn more about joining the Oldcastle team HERE.

Follow Oldcastle Careers on Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook for jobs andcareer advice. And, don’t forget to join our NEW Talent Community to receive a monthly e-mail newsletter with expert advice on the job search process.

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Oldcastle Coastal

coastalFor almost 50 years, Florida-based Oldcastle Coastal has been a leading manufacturer and distributor of masonry and hardscape products, ranging from brick and stone to pavers and retaining walls. Coastal has been helping homeowners and professionals with all aspects of their projects since 1965. Their product line includes: Masonry, Pavers and Retaining Walls, including Belgard hardscapes.


bench     castle

For homeowners, they offer a variety of paver color choices and textures for outdoor living areas – patio to pool. A wide variety of styles, colors and designs help create and complement landscaping, walkways, gardens and outdoor living ares. Customers can visit their showrooms located throughout Florida.


Locations: Gainesville, Pompano Beach, Longwood, Tampa, Ft. Myers and Sarasota

Interested in working for us?
Search for jobs HERE.

Our website: http://www.oldcastlecoastal.com/

About Oldcastle (our parent company)

Oldcastle is North America’s largest manufacturer of building products and materials. With more than 2,000 locations throughout North America, we are in constant pursuit of the next generation of successful decision makers, leaders and problem solvers. Learn more about joining the Oldcastle team HERE.

Follow Oldcastle Careers on FacebookTwitterGoogle+Pinterest, and LinkedIn!

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Kevin Lissow, Corporate Recruiter, Oldcastle, Inc.

KevinlissowWhat do you do in your position?
I am a Corporate Recruiter. I focus on opportunities tied to our Corporate offices in Atlanta and our Oldcastle Materials Corporate roles.

What year did you start?
I started in December of 2012

Where is your job located?
I sit in Rochester, NY – although most of the roles I recruit for are in Atlanta and Charlotte.

What do you like about working here?
The people. Everyone I work with is great. I always say Oldcastle feels like a small family business, even though it’s a huge global company. I also enjoy helping people find their next “dream job.”

What are the best parts of your job?
I really enjoy the interactions with the Oldcastle team. It’s also very rewarding to visit the corporate locations and to visit all of the people that I have brought into the Oldcastle organization!

Why do you think Oldcastle is a good place to work?
Everyone is very down to earth. The organization really takes care of its employees – and they seem to be very conscious of people advancing within their careers.


Kevin (second from left, in blue), Recruiting Office golf scramble team building event

How would your coworkers describe you?
Easy going. I like to laugh and enjoy myself at work. We spend a great deal of time together at work, so it’s important that we enjoy ourselves while we’re here!

Do you have any funny or interesting work stories to share?
I always find it interesting how small the world is. I recently talked to someone half way across the country and learned that he grew up 15 minutes from me. I had just been camping in his hometown days before we connected! It seems like those types of things happen quite often. I also have a couple of candidates who were former pro athletes. As a big sports fan, I always find that to be interesting.

What are your hobbies outside of work?
I like to spend time with family and friends. I have two young kids, so hobbies tend to take a back seat to them! I love to golf (when I can get away)!

If you would like, tell us about your family.
I have a 6-year old daughter and 10-year old son. Between sports and dance recitals, we’re always on the run. People laugh because I am married to my “high school sweetheart” – apparently that’s rare in this day and age! We live in Spencerport, NY, a suburb of Rochester.

Just for fun, we want to know – what was your first job ever?
I worked in a grocery store as a stock clerk. I also worked in a grain mill. The mill job was the hardest job of my life. I had to carry 100 lb. bags around all day long in a dirty, dusty environment! One interesting job I had a few years ago was sales and site project manager for a company that installed home elevators – so I had the opportunity to see a lot of great homes.



Oldcastle is North America’s largest manufacturer of building products and materials. With more than 2,000 locations throughout North America, we are in constant pursuit of the next generation of successful decision makers, leaders and problem solvers. Learn more about joining the Oldcastle team HERE.

Follow us on FacebookTwitterGoogle+Pinterest, and LinkedIn!


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Sink or Swim – Interview Advice From Shark Tank

maninwaterBeyond the bickering, goofy gadgets and celebrity sharks, there are true takeaways from that show that can help job hunting hopefuls. If you look a little closer, you’ll see that nervous entrepreneurs share similarities to job seekers.

The entrepreneurs who end up getting a deal aren’t just the people with the best products; they also have the best pitches. Sink your teeth into these pointers to maximize your personal pitch.

There are some entrepreneurs who just “get it.” They’ve obviously studied the show, and know what the sharks want to hear. You need to do the same for your interview. You can never be too prepared. Know where the interview location is (a trial run is always a good idea), how long it takes to get there, what you’re going to wear and the questions you plan on asking. Being prepared also helps calm your nerves. Jitters are ok, but the more thoroughly you prepare, the more confident you will become.

At a recent Shark Tank casting call in Iowa, one of the producers was interviewed by the local paper. What can a Shark Tank wanna-be do to get his attention?

“I’m always most impressed with entrepreneurs that know their stuff. The entrepreneurs who know their numbers, their market and have a vision for the company.”

This sounds a lot like what job candidates should know. Competition for jobs is fierce. You’re going against hundreds of other hopefuls. If you haven’t perfected your personal pitch, you’re in trouble.

As a potential employee, you should go beyond knowing surface level facts about the company you want to join. With so much public information available online, there’s no excuse not to. You should also be able to speak knowledgeably about the industry you’re in (or going into). This is especially true if you’re changing professions. Do online research, informational interviews, and check out professional associations. Just like the entrepreneurs, you need to be ready for any question that comes your way.

Do you think the entrepreneurs go out there and “wing it” when it comes time to present to the sharks? Absolutely not! They have practiced their pitch dozens of times. You can do the same before your big interview. Go over potential interview questions with a friend or family member. Mock interviews are a great way to get feedback on any nervous habits, including distracting verbal or physical habits.

Manners matter. You can be friendly, but remember – you’re there to make a great impression, not to make new friends. On Shark Tank, the sharks may laugh and joke, but they always get to the tough questions, including the basics about the inventor’s business. No matter how clever or creative the sales pitch was, if the entrepreneur can’t answer questions about their product’s sales, wholesale and retail costs, they’re out. And, as anyone who has ever watched the show knows, it never pays to be rude, defensive or arrogant. When you are presenting yourself at an interview, the same thing holds true. This is the time for your best behavior and A-game, no matter what oddball questions or behavior is thrown your way.

Imagine the moment an entrepreneur walks through the doors to meet the sharks for the first time. It’s a mixture of excitement and apprehension. At the same time, they know that it’s their only shot. Adopt the same mentality. This is your one chance to be in the spotlight and make your best impression. You need to remain confident and composed during the interview, from the second you walk in the door.

Think about what it takes to land a coveted spot on the show. You have to apply, pitch in front of the producers and then advance to the next round. You do all of that BEFORE you even get to appear on TV! In addition, many of these entrepreneurs have learned how to handle rejection. They’ve heard “no” many times before. They pick themselves up and keep persevering, often at huge costs. We’re not asking you to get a second mortgage or live in your car (like many of the hungry entrepreneurs have done); however, we can all learn from their drive and passion. They only need one “yes,” and so do you.

Even though the sharks are millionaires, they’re not going to just write a check to anyone. The same holds true for your future employer. Prove to them that you’re worth every penny by convincing them that you have the energy, knowledge, skills and experience to get the job done. What you say, the way you say it and how you present yourself in the interview can be the deciding factor between you and another candidate.

Shark tank wanna-be entrepreneurs need to show that their invention or service is the next big thing. Job seekers need to show employers that THEY are the next big thing. With perseverance and attention to the points above, you should be well on your way to a successful interview.

Until next time, catch you in the tank!

P.S. Please share this post if you found it to be helpful.

* This guest post originally appeared on LinkedIn.

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Oldcastle is North America’s largest manufacturer of building products and materials. With more than 2,000 locations throughout North America, we are in constant pursuit of the next generation of successful decision makers, leaders and problem solvers. Learn more about joining the Oldcastle team HERE.

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Tilcon Connecticut

logoTilconCTTilcon Connecticut is an award-winning, leading supplier of quality crushed stone, hot mix asphalt and ready mix concrete. They provide heavy and highway construction and paving services for state/local road, bridge and highway projects and have a barge transportation division that delivers stone.


In the last several decades, Tilcon Connecticut has seen several acquisitions and mergers:

  • 1923 –  Angelo Tomasso Inc., was founded
  • 1957 –  North Haven Asphalt Company, Tomasso of North Haven, Inc. founded
  • 1961 – Sherman Sand and Stone Co. (New Britain), Sherman-Tomasso Concrete Inc. founded
  • 1964 – Arborio & Sons (Farmington), and the formation of a new entity known as Arborio Tomasso, Inc.
  • 1965 – Construction of new concrete plant in Middletown, CT
  • 1969 – Purchase of Helming Brothers in Bristol, CT
  • 1970’s – Ashland Oil Resources Company purchased New Haven Trap Rock
  • 1970 – Construction of the Portland, CT Asphalt Plant
  • 1972 – Ashland Oil Resources Company purchased Angelo Tomasso Inc. to become NHTR Tomasso
  • 1975 – Purchased the Hamden, CT asphalt plant from Blakeslee Company
  • 1979 – Thomas Tilling Ltd. Purchased Ashland Oil in the North East. Tomasso became known as Tilcon Tomasso, a division of Tilcon Warren, Inc.
  • 1984 – Sold to British Tire and Rubber Co.
  • 1990 – Tilcon Tomasso became known as Tilcon Connecticut
  • 1996 – Sold to CRH of Dublin, Ireland – a publicly traded company on the New York Stock Exchange (ticker symbol CRH) – BALF Company in Newington was already owned by CRH in the nineties
  • 2000 – Tilcon purchased Soneco

Tilcon Connecticut Inc. continues to supply construction materials throughout the state by using today’s technology to produce quality Aggregates and Hot Mix Asphalt.

Paving Services
Heavy & Highway Construction
Barge Transportation
Rail Services

Crushed Stone
Hot Mix Asphalt
Ready Mix Concrete

hh-photo-1   img_Community Relations   img_Paving the Way to Safety

Projects include:
Crushed stone
Hot Mix Asphalt
Ready Mix Concrete
Paving Services
Heavy & Highway Construction
Barge Transportation Services

Barge Transportation

Constructing Leaders
At Tilcon Connecticut, we invest in the training needed to help our employees, future leaders and our business to be successful!

Interested in working for us?
We are looking for high performers with the desire to continually learn and embrace opportunities to develop new skills.  Our search is focused on individuals who demonstrate our core values of safety, quality and integrity.  Find out about our openings and more here: Careers at Tilcon

Contact Us:
P.O. Box 1357
642 Black Rock Ave.
New Britain, CT 06050

 About Oldcastle (our parent company)
Oldcastle is North America’s largest manufacturer of building products and materials. With more than 2,000 locations throughout North America, we are in constant pursuit of the next generation of successful decision makers, leaders and problem solvers. Learn more about joining the Oldcastle team HERE.

Follow Oldcastle Careers on FacebookTwitterGoogle+Pinterest, and LinkedIn!

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What Recruiters Really Look For When Checking Your References

careerladder By the time you’re asked for references, you’re probably feeling pretty good. You may even pat yourself on the back and say “I got this!” It IS a good sign when you’re asked to provide references, but don’t go changing your LinkedIn or Facebook profile to that new job title just yet. Here are a few guidelines and red flags to watch out for.

Think twice about listing peers
Pick a boss, manager or superior to be your reference. If you were a manager or in another supervisory role, avoid picking direct reports as references. Ideally, aim to have at least 2 of your 3 references be people you reported to directly.

Choose Wisely
Always pick people who will speak highly, yet honestly, about you.  An overly complimentary reference can be just as bad as a negative one. Experienced hiring managers can tell when references are exaggerating or giving them fluff answers instead of real facts and opinions about a person. No one is expecting you to be perfect. We all have strengths and weaknesses.  The purpose of the reference checking process is to find out if you are who you say you are, if your resume reflects your true skills and if you would be a good fit for the organization.

Prep your references beforehand
It sounds really bad to a recruiter when they call someone who seems surprised to be contacted. Even worse, some references have even blurted out “I’m not sure why I was even asked to be a reference.” Oops. You can avoid this scenario by keeping your references in the loop and giving them a heads up that they’re going to get a call. Even better, provide them with a copy of your resume, tell them a little bit about the position you’re applying for and give them a few reminders about which skills you’re hoping they can emphasize. You don’t want them to sound scripted, but it can help to refresh their memory on your background, especially if you have not seen or worked with the person for awhile.

Don’t Hand In Your References Too Early
Wait until you’re asked! Our recruiters ask for the names of 3 past managers, even if we were already given a pre-prepared list.

We want to see how well a candidate stays connected to past management after they leave. Good employees have a network from past jobs and companies that they can rely on. Mediocre or weak candidates often leave companies on bad terms and don’t have the same network.” – Chris Garrie, VP of Recruiting

Leave References Off Your Resume
Use the space at the bottom of your resume for more important information. If you have them on there, recruiters are already evaluating who you listed. Everything you say, do or write during the application and interview process is a clue. Make sure these clues play to your advantage.

The Red Flags

  1. Weak references. These include personal friends, professors (if you have been out of college more than a few years), ministers/pastors, parents and in-laws. Yes, we have seen it all.
  2. What Your Reference Says Is Just As Important As What They Don’t. If your reference sounds rehearsed or like they are withholding information, our radar goes up.
  3. Suspicious Answers To The Hard Questions.  Long pauses and being too careful with responses or being too complimentary are very telling to a hiring manager.

“If the person on the other end of the line is not providing much information or seems frustrated, it’s a good sign that they aren’t interested in talking about the person, no matter what they are actually saying. People are cordial and upbeat when they’re doing a favor for someone they truly like. They are short and curt if they’re talking about someone they don’t.” – Rob Mischler, Staffing Manager

Reference checking is a way to find out what motivates someone, what type of employee they are and how likely they are to fit in, produce and stay at their potential new place of employment. While every hiring manager or recruiter has their own method for handling references, it’s better to err on the side of caution and make sure you pick the right references and prep them properly. Do this and you will increase the odds of landing that job!

Bonus tip: Encourage your references to respond to that initial call as soon as possible. We’re not expecting them to answer the call on the spot, but if we don’t hear back within a few days, that can be a bad sign.


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