6 Biggest Reference Mistakes To Avoid That Can Cost You The Job

Do you want to include references in your CV? Do you know the guidelines for providing references on a resume? Then you’re at the right place.

You must keep in mind that you must provide references for every position you have held. A reference must be well-planned and thought out to be effective. What constitutes references? How do they format? This article explains how to make adequate references.

Common mistake one should avoid while writing a CV?

CV can give you the edge you need if appropriately written. When you apply for jobs, your CV highlights your experience, education, and talents to convince employers that you’d be a good fit for the role. You can write an effective resume by following these principles to make a good impression on hiring managers. You can make a strong CV that will catch potential employers’ eyes by learning about common mistakes people make in CVs.

Here, we list people’s most prominent yet common resume mistakes while writing a CV

  1. Creating a too-short or too-lengthy resume
  2. Including resume objective
  3. Giving out a few details
  4. Listing out irrelevant skills
  5. Not adding reference

Yes, not adding references to your CV can lower your chances of getting the job. And It is a common mistake most of us make.

In this article, you will learn about CV references. A typical CV has several components, including a references section at the end. It is traditional to provide referees who are familiar with you, has worked with you, and can speak highly of you.

What can go wrong during reference in the CV?

A good reference can help your chances of landing a job, even if you do well in other aspects of the interview. Your chances of landing a job may increase if you figure out how to deal with a bad reference.

Here are five mistakes to prevent while adding a reference

Employers could ask for a CV from you when applying for jobs. Include a list of references in your CV to give prospective employers more information about you. Decide if having references will help you and increase your chances of being recruited. Employers may use your references to determine suitability for the position.

Check out the best CV writing services so that your CV looks more professional.

With so much at stake, let’s discuss 6 big mistakes job seekers make that you should avoid.

Fake a reference

Most employers verify references, so that’s the first thing you should know. Your application will be denied immediately if you use a false reference. It’s not worth the risk, especially if your application is highly likely to be accepted based on your actual or genuine qualifications for the job.

Using someone as a reference without getting their permission

Your references can receive a storm of calls, and they won’t even be ready because they will need to know what position you’ve applied for. Simply put, your reference will respond later.  Therefore, you should contact references before giving references contact information to a potential employer so they can get ready for the call.

Your Reference is not prepared

In addition to No. 3, you must inform your references about the job you’ve applied for so they can discuss your most pertinent qualifications and give you the best recommendation. It is similar to putting your references and yourself in the hot seat if you apply for several jobs without letting them know.

Bad formatting

The poor layout is one of the first things companies check for when reviewing your CV. It may give the impression that you need to pay more attention to detail, which may reflect poorly on you. Make sure the arrangement is as nearly flawless as possible because your CV is you on paper.

This prevents mistakes and abrupt font changes in the middle of sentences. If anything needs to be formatted better or candidates need to market themselves effectively in the first few paragraphs, there needs to be more use in reading more.

Summed up, HR professionals choose neat, professional, and easy-to-scan CVs.

You list bad references


Make sure everybody you mention as a reference can provide you with a strong recommendation. Some employers will only formally provide your employment dates and information on you rehire eligibility. You’ve lost your shot at the new job if the response is “no.”

Having poor grammar and spelling

Spelling errors continue to be so common. Checking your resume from beginning to end, whether you do it yourself or have someone else do it, will make the difference between being accepted and being refused. Additionally, run a spell and grammar checker like Grammarly over your application.

Printing it out and reading it before mailing is the best action.

We discuss a few reference examples of how you should format your reference.

Reference Examples

Codey Hughes

Product Manager

Sound Warehouse


078 8855 5721

[email protected]

Relationship: Software engineer

Hope Miller

Business Development Manager

Superior Interactive

71 Fosse Way


PA21 0NS

[email protected]

Relationship: marketing team lead

If you want more professional examples and a CV that will make you stand out amongst 100s of other applicants? Check out the CV Reference example.

Most of the time, references are requested from human resources professionals. They could be close friends, old co-workers, clients, teachers, or acquaintances you made through an activity. Your recommendations will vary depending on the position you’re applying for.



References are just as crucial as a resume and should not be ignored. When applying for a new job, it is usually accepted that the length of the reference letter should be at least three times that of the CV. The first justification for needing references is that you could be invited to interview them. Your chances of getting an interview and having your application accepted are vital if you’re prepared to put in the effort and demonstrate your skills to a potential employer.