Employee referencing for self employed
Times are difficult for all of us and some small businesses are going under purely because there is no money coming in. It's often that self-employed people are looking for a regular income and "normal" job, and in recent times that's becoming more common. Those in recruitment know that self-employed have many skills employers are looking for, but they don’t have references. Can you do employee referencing for the self-employed?
How do you get a job reference?
It’s easy for those who’ve been a paid employee, but less so for those who have been self-employed. Some previous clients might give their self-employed contractors a testimonial, which employers usually accept. Hopefully, those who are self-employed would already have asked for them, if not, they should get some now.
The newer the reference, the better
If a ex-self-employed candidate asks for advice, tell them that the newer the reference they can get, the better. Most employers aren’t terribly interested in something that happened twenty years ago. They want up-to-date and relevant.
If it’s not possible to get up-to-date references (or testimonials) then see what they can get. They may have to be persistent. Out of sight is very much out of mind if someone has done a one-off piece of work for you.
What other advice can you give as referencing for self employed?
Of course, self-employed candidates can always ask for personal character references. Most employers are just looking for proof that the potential hire is who they say they are. They are not looking for proof of extraneous details.
Let’s face it, most of us are somewhere near to the top of the normal distribution curve. We are not exceptional in everything. A solid reference telling a potential employer that they will give the job their all is definitely worth having.
Any potential employer with experiences will understand that not everyone fits neatly into a box. If they don’t understand this, perhaps they are not the kind of employer the candidate wants to work for. Recruiters, can use their influence to help persuade employers that the candidate is right for them.
After all, isn’t that what recruiters do best? Use their skills to match the right candidate with the right employer. They also take time to get to know employees, to know their needs and their business. They can persuade hiring clients that an ex-self-employed candidate may not have quite the perfect reference - but they do have the requisite skills.
31st July 2020