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13-11-2009, 21:01   #1
EmmaWoo
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Reference letter

I was asked to provide a reference letter for one of my employees who is leaving the company. I am not sure what is supposed to be included in the letter and what should be avoid mentioning? I learned that some companies will state in the letter that they are willing to re-employ their former employees if the opportunity arose. I am just wondering if it is common way of doing for Irish companies? Also do I need to give his salary details? If the employee's potential employer phoned for oral reference, what employers should usually say about the person?

Could anyone provide a sample or template of reference letter? Greatly appreciated!

Thank you very much.
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13-11-2009, 22:20   #2
Sinall
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If they phone for an oral reference they will ask you specific questions along the lines of, Did X report directly into you, How would you descibe their attitude to work, If there was a suitable position availble would you reemploy them, How was their attendance and time keeping etc?

A written reference is usually along the lines of..."X was employed in ABC company as a [insert job title] from ?date to ?date. I found X to be a [insert some attributes about X] and would wholeheartedly recommend him/her for any future position."

This is of course if you do want to recommend X! No need to mention salary.
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14-11-2009, 05:17   #3
Nody
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The above though I'd also include briefly about the daily tasks. In regards to recommendations I'd write is "And on a personal note I'd bla bla bla" or you may make it look like your company recommends the person.
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14-11-2009, 22:58   #4
EmmaWoo
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Thanks a lot, Sinall and Nody. Very much appreciated your replies!
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15-11-2009, 11:12   #5
Otis Driftwood
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One thing to bear in mind is that its illegal to give a bad reference.Some companies will just give a letter of employment if they wernt happy with the persons performance.
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15-11-2009, 11:50   #6
mood
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nedtheshed View Post
One thing to bear in mind is that its illegal to give a bad reference.Some companies will just give a letter of employment if they wernt happy with the persons performance.
I didn't know this. As you sure? Some companies only give letter of employment now as some have been sued by new employers after employee turns out not to be as goo as the company stated!
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15-11-2009, 12:08   #7
questor282
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But who is to decide what a bad reference is. If I report that X showed very bad timekeeping and was disciplined as a result (and there is a HR paper trail to back this up) then this could be considered a bad reference, although it is totally truthful. I very much doubt that this would be illegal, and I would rather inform a prospective new employer of this fact rather than them come back to me 6 months later and want to know why I didn't tell them this. I think I would more than likely be heading towards legal dodgy ground by NOT disclosing this information.

Just to let you know I provide references on past employees on a weekly basis and I WILL provide the info as detailed above and I have never had any legal action taken against me as a result.

I don't think you can proclaim that something is illegal without providing the necessary reference to the statute book to back this up.

Last edited by questor282; 15-11-2009 at 12:09. Reason: my bad writing
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15-11-2009, 12:39   #8
ScouseMouse
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A good reference would include info about how good they were at their job, how they were an asset, how they will be missed, etc etc.

Along with, the person would be welcome to return to the company at a later date.

A bad reference goes something like this. (Which I have seen done to an ejit who was pushed.)


Paddy worked here for x amount of years as a xxxxx

His performance was satisfactory.

He is leaving us volunterily. (spelling?)




Get the idea?
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16-11-2009, 00:10   #9
MistyCheese
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nedtheshed View Post
One thing to bear in mind is that its illegal to give a bad reference.Some companies will just give a letter of employment if they wernt happy with the persons performance.
A person I worked for gave me a bad reference. He said I could use him as a reference but when someone from an employment agency rang him he apparently gave me a terrible one. I don't know what was said but the lady from the employment agency rang me to ask if I had anyone else I could use, because I sure couldn't use him!

I have no idea what I did or he thinks I did.
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16-11-2009, 00:25   #10
Eoin
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nedtheshed View Post
One thing to bear in mind is that its illegal to give a bad reference.Some companies will just give a letter of employment if they wernt happy with the persons performance.
No, it's not illegal. You have to be able to back any negative statements up, but it's not outright illegal. It seems to be a common misconception.
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16-11-2009, 09:53   #11
Nody
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Originally Posted by eoin View Post
No, it's not illegal. You have to be able to back any negative statements up, but it's not outright illegal. It seems to be a common misconception.
And you also have to be able to back up a positive reference (esp. a shining with polish style reference) which is just as important

Also to add a negative reference over the phone would usually go like this:

Would you hire this employee again? 30s silence, yes.
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