Most likely you have checklists with steps that need to be followed and checked off as they are complete. This helps to ensure nothing is missed whilst successful actions and consistency is maintained. This will also become particularly important as you continue to expand your division and business.

But here is a question – is it more important that the task is checked off as complete, or that it is done, and done correctly to achieve the full meaning of the task’s intention?

A very sad truth that is becoming more and more evident, and you might have experienced too, is how reference checks are completed during the hiring process and the general perception by some.

From experience and speaking with people who’ve been appointed as referees, as well as high level executives, it seems that a general perception is that the reference check is merely a box to be checked.

Sadly, there is a reason for this perception.

Have you ever provided reference feedback for someone and noticed that the questions are somewhat superficial, or your comments about weaknesses are not really getting acknowledged with the intention to be understood?

Usually, there are a few things that happen when Performia is engaged to complete reference checks on a candidate or as part of completing an Assisted Recruitment service.

1. The referee realises very quickly this is not the average reference check they’ve experienced,

2. The referee wants information on how Performia can assist and protect their business,

3. The referee realises they are being listened to, and that their job is not to give a happy positive reference, but the honest, real, truth; the good, the bad, and the ugly!

It’s important to note that reference checks are one of, if not, the most important part of your hiring process. Don’t let this step be taken lightly.

You are not asking for a ‘feel good reference’, nor are you trying to establish only what can be a positive.

The very important areas you need to be checking with a referee include –

1. Results expected and actual results achieved.

2. Verification of the candidate’s results claims.

3. Areas for improvement.

And…. ensure you are speaking with a qualified, verified, referee.

Along with many other questions. It’s important to delve further in the feedback you get to ensure you get the required answers.

It’s also best to have someone else complete reference checks who has no vested interest in seeing the candidate get hired.

I truly hope that you take the reference checking step in your hiring process seriously, ensuring you are not part of the majority who is just “checking the box”.

There are many horror stories including Multibillion-dollar international businesses that took this step lightly and realised the damage in the aftermath, which might even be in the years to come.

I hope this has been of value and please contact Performia for any advice or help regarding your team requirements.

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