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Asking references to fill out forms

Posted

Specializes in Pediatric Pulmonology and Allergy. Has 8 years experience.

How do you feel about asking references to fill out forms that either ask them to rank you on a scale, or give narrative responses to assorted questions?

For me personally, it was enough of a hassle just getting a general reference letter. I feel bad asking my references (busy people) to do additional work on my behalf by filling out forms and answering a dozen questions. Usually if a place requires these references I just don't apply, unless it's a job I want very, very badly.

llg, PhD, RN

Specializes in Nursing Professional Development. Has 43 years experience.

As someone who gets asked for references ocassionally, I usually find it easier to fill out a form or rate someone on a set scale that to have to write a letter "free-style" -- unless the form is exceptionally long. With a free-style letter, you are always trying to guess what the employer is looking for. With a standard form, you know what they want -- and can choose to write an additional comment if you want to add something.

So don't feel too bad about those forms. They often take less time and cause less stress for the writer.

I agree with llg on this. I hesitate to ask a reference to write a letter. Some people don not want to do this for various reasons, but they can fill out a form in 10 or 15 minutes.

I feel the same way. I feel like I'm harassing my references all the time. It's a good idea for employers & if it were just the one time & I got the job, it'd be no big deal. But with the job market the way it is, I'm having to ask my references for help multiple times. I feel bad, like they don't have time for this.

I understand that these forms are easier for them to fill out than having to write a "free-style" letter, but the letter is a one-time thing--I only had to ask once & can use it for every position. With the reference forms, who knows how many jobs will require it & each one is a unique task that they have to take time out for.

I had already asked them for letters, and once again to fill out a references form, so when I recently applied to a position that required me to send them a form that they needed to fill out & send back to me via snail mail with their signature over the seal.. I was like, no, I'm not bugging them anymore & gave up on that job.

JeanettePNP, MSN, RN, NP

Specializes in Pediatric Pulmonology and Allergy. Has 8 years experience.

I feel the same way. I feel like I'm harassing my references all the time. It's a good idea for employers & if it were just the one time & I got the job, it'd be no big deal. But with the job market the way it is, I'm having to ask my references for help multiple times. I feel bad, like they don't have time for this.

I understand that these forms are easier for them to fill out than having to write a "free-style" letter, but the letter is a one-time thing--I only had to ask once & can use it for every position. With the reference forms, who knows how many jobs will require it & each one is a unique task that they have to take time out for.

I had already asked them for letters, and once again to fill out a references form, so when I recently applied to a position that required me to send them a form that they needed to fill out & send back to me via snail mail with their signature over the seal.. I was like, no, I'm not bugging them anymore & gave up on that job.

Exactly. I give up on applying if I have to go back to my references AGAIN to ask them to fill out yet another form. So far all the places that required those forms were out of state, and not my top choice of position anyway -- so no great loss.