We know that chasing references can be time-consuming; why would you spend a few hours calling and checking up on your candidate if you don't even know if they are going to get the interview? Balancing time spent chasing referees versus time spent finding more candidates/roles is crucial. Perhaps submitting the opinions of previous employers could help get your candidate get to the interview stage?
Here are possible benefits of getting the candidate's references done early.
It is recruitment best practice to source references at the final stage of the hiring process, however here are some ideas why it might be advantageous to break those rules.
1. An excellent reference from a previous employer could give you the edge.
Hiring managers know CVs are written to sell the candidates skills to the new employer, but references from unbiased parties can provide a better insight into what the candidate is like as an employee.
2. People know people.
When recruiting within the same industry, there's a chance hiring managers know the people in other companies who give references. A reference from a connection may just be more powerful than a paragraph on a CV.
3. You are more professional.
Showing that you go the extra mile as a recruiter will increase your standing as an expert in your field. If you clients know you thoroughly research your candidates BEFORE submitting them for interview, you'll stand out from the crowd.
Can the extra time and effort lead to more leads?
Is doing early stage references going to benefit your business, your candidates and your clients? We all know that connecting with referees can help position yourself as an expert in your field and help build rapport with the very people making hiring positions in your industry. This could very well give you an advantage