References are a vital part of the application process for many companies. In the legal world, employers like to ensure they are hiring a paralegal who is suitable and professional in the work environment. References do not need to be only previous employers, but they should focus on professional contacts rather than personal. Professional contacts hold much more weight to an employer than friends or family do. There are also appropriate ways to present these references to a potential employer, as not all require them.

Paralegals in search of employment need not include references on a cover letter or a resume. Instead, the paralegal should note, “References available upon request,” or something similar. The applicant should keep a list of these references and their contact information available. Applicants should definitely bring a professional list of these references with them to any interviews.

References should be chosen carefully. Paralegals need to remember that this individual should be able to provide complimentary accounts of them or to expound upon their qualities and what makes them appealing. Individuals need to request permission from each reference before using them as such. They should also keep in contact with the reference, as this will keep a fresh perspective should a prospective employer contact the reference.

References should be contacted and updated whenever a new potential employer is given the list, so they are not caught off guard if contacted. Individuals should also make sure their references have updated information for them. It is also appropriate to ask what he or she is going to say to ensure this is a good professional reference choice.

An appropriate reference is not always a previous employer. Paralegal applicants can use previous co-workers, professors, landlords, or individuals who work in the same industry and can attest to their knowledge. These alternative references are beneficial to those with little to no previous job experience or long gaps in employment.

Applicants should have a clean copy of references that matches the typed style of their resume available when interviewing with employers. This should also be available when applying or corresponding electronically with an employer, as they may ask that you send the electronic file. This list should include the name, job title, phone number, and email address of the reference. Applicants may also wish to include the relationships to their references. This information will guide the potential employer as he or she contacts the reference.

Some employers may request letters of reference. Paralegals can expect this when applying for a highly coveted position?the more important the position, the more pre-employment requirements. Letters of reference are also handy to provide to potential employers rather than a list of reference contact information. Be sure that the contact information for the reference is included, though, as the potential employer may wish to contact the reference to verify the information provided.

Although potential employers typically request professional references, occasionally personal references may be requested as well. When choosing personal references, paralegals should avoid choosing a family member. They may choose a previous co-worker who is also a friend or classmate. This reference should still be able to highlight your professional qualities and promote your image.

Three is the typical number of references that are requested by employers, but paralegal applicants should have at least five ready to give. Being unable to provide adequate references is looked upon very poorly in the legal profession. When making the final decision, remember that references are meant to promote the individual and give an enthusiastic account, not just satisfactory.


© 2021 Copyright | | All Rights Reserved