Who can I use as a reference?

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Hollife
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#1
Report Thread starter 2 years ago
#1
Hello! I've been applying for jobs since March. I think a big part of my lack of success might be that I have no references. I usually put down "available on request" in the hopes that they won't bother requesting them...

I left education (uni) 5 years ago. I did contact my 3 old tutors and ask for a reference but one of them ignored my message, one of them said they couldn't remember me and the third said he didn't think it would be suitable as I've been gone for half a decade.

I was self-employed for the past 3 ish years (after jobsearching got nowhere for the first year and a half) and I didn't work with any employers or external companies except myself so I have no professional references. The only "real" job I've had was a summer job before my A-levels in 2011.

Ive done no volunteering (am applying for some when I see them now ofc), joined no clubs and have no professional friends - they work normal jobs like in an office or retail. Can i still use them?? Or is it like a passport, when you can only pick doctors and lawyers, etc?

Any reference suggestions or tips would be handy. Thank you!
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Allyson90
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#2
Report 2 years ago
#2
(Original post by Hollife)
Hello! I've been applying for jobs since March. I think a big part of my lack of success might be that I have no references. I usually put down "available on request" in the hopes that they won't bother requesting them...

I left education (uni) 5 years ago. I did contact my 3 old tutors and ask for a reference but one of them ignored my message, one of them said they couldn't remember me and the third said he didn't think it would be suitable as I've been gone for half a decade.

I was self-employed for the past 3 ish years (after jobsearching got nowhere for the first year and a half) and I didn't work with any employers or external companies except myself so I have no professional references. The only "real" job I've had was a summer job before my A-levels in 2011.

Ive done no volunteering (am applying for some when I see them now ofc), joined no clubs and have no professional friends - they work normal jobs like in an office or retail. Can i still use them?? Or is it like a passport, when you can only pick doctors and lawyers, etc?

Any reference suggestions or tips would be handy. Thank you!
Try your own GP, dentist, if you had a lawyer for long time, minister,
People who known you for long time is usually the best to ask, old tutors has that many people over the years so perhaps wouldn't remember you,
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Muttley79
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#3
Report 2 years ago
#3
(Original post by Hollife)
Hello! I've been applying for jobs since March. I think a big part of my lack of success might be that I have no references. I usually put down "available on request" in the hopes that they won't bother requesting them...

I left education (uni) 5 years ago. I did contact my 3 old tutors and ask for a reference but one of them ignored my message, one of them said they couldn't remember me and the third said he didn't think it would be suitable as I've been gone for half a decade.

I was self-employed for the past 3 ish years (after jobsearching got nowhere for the first year and a half) and I didn't work with any employers or external companies except myself so I have no professional references. The only "real" job I've had was a summer job before my A-levels in 2011.

Ive done no volunteering (am applying for some when I see them now ofc), joined no clubs and have no professional friends - they work normal jobs like in an office or retail. Can i still use them?? Or is it like a passport, when you can only pick doctors and lawyers, etc?

Any reference suggestions or tips would be handy. Thank you!
I've done reference for people I taught 10 years ago .. if you are desperate it might be worth seeing if a tutor or A level teacher would help out.
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cheesecakelove
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#4
Report 2 years ago
#4
(Original post by Hollife)
Hello! I've been applying for jobs since March. I think a big part of my lack of success might be that I have no references. I usually put down "available on request" in the hopes that they won't bother requesting them...

I left education (uni) 5 years ago. I did contact my 3 old tutors and ask for a reference but one of them ignored my message, one of them said they couldn't remember me and the third said he didn't think it would be suitable as I've been gone for half a decade.

I was self-employed for the past 3 ish years (after jobsearching got nowhere for the first year and a half) and I didn't work with any employers or external companies except myself so I have no professional references. The only "real" job I've had was a summer job before my A-levels in 2011.

Ive done no volunteering (am applying for some when I see them now ofc), joined no clubs and have no professional friends - they work normal jobs like in an office or retail. Can i still use them?? Or is it like a passport, when you can only pick doctors and lawyers, etc?

Any reference suggestions or tips would be handy. Thank you!
Job references are different to a passport reference - they are there to talk about your skills and experience, not confirm your identity, so I wouldn't advise asking a doctor or solicitor.

I would try to get some volunteering started as soon as possible - not only will it show that you have taken initiative to develop your skills but it is a good place to get a reference. You mention that you were self-employed - what kind of work were you doing? Now that you are looking for work, what kind of roles are you looking for?

Usually jobs will ask for references when you get to the interview stage or beyond, so putting down "references available on request" won't have had any bearing on the success of your application. You want to make sure you fit the job description, and if not, look into getting the experience, skills and qualifications to do so.
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Hollife
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#5
Report Thread starter 2 years ago
#5
(Original post by cheesecakelove)
Job references are different to a passport reference - they are there to talk about your skills and experience, not confirm your identity, so I wouldn't advise asking a doctor or solicitor.

I would try to get some volunteering started as soon as possible - not only will it show that you have taken initiative to develop your skills but it is a good place to get a reference. You mention that you were self-employed - what kind of work were you doing? Now that you are looking for work, what kind of roles are you looking for?

Usually jobs will ask for references when you get to the interview stage or beyond, so putting down "references available on request" won't have had any bearing on the success of your application. You want to make sure you fit the job description, and if not, look into getting the experience, skills and qualifications to do so.
I was a blogger! Now I'm looking for anything - retail, office work, cleaning, receptionist, assistant, etc etc. I'm not fussy as I said I am applying for voluntary roles as well! Haven't had any luck yet but I'm still keeping going.
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cheesecakelove
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#6
Report 2 years ago
#6
(Original post by Hollife)
I was a blogger! Now I'm looking for anything - retail, office work, cleaning, receptionist, assistant, etc etc. I'm not fussy as I said I am applying for voluntary roles as well! Haven't had any luck yet but I'm still keeping going.
Keep up with your applications! You could look for volunteer admin roles or charity shop roles to help gain skills for the types of job you are looking for. You could also look for restaurant/cafe/bar work as they typically hire those will little or no experience, so long as you have the right personality. You could also ask friends or family if they know of any vacancies where they work, as this can often serve as a recommendation. One restaurant that I worked at used to hire college students for part time roles, and would hire their friends if they were looking for work too. They never asked them for references.
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cheesecakelove
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#7
Report 2 years ago
#7
In your previous role as a blogger, how did you make income if you were self-employed? Were you involved in any special projects or collaborations with other bloggers? Were you ever sponsored by other companies?
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Emma:-)
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#8
Report 2 years ago
#8
(Original post by Hollife)
I was a blogger! Now I'm looking for anything - retail, office work, cleaning, receptionist, assistant, etc etc. I'm not fussy as I said I am applying for voluntary roles as well! Haven't had any luck yet but I'm still keeping going.
Although you were a blogger and self employed- is there any other people that you knew through your line of work? Perhaps someone you worked alongside or something? If so could you use them?
I know you have already tried uni tutors but would any of your a-level tutors remember you?
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