Who can I add as my character reference?

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Luke Shipley
Updated on:

The most common reason why you may want to submit a character reference is that you cannot meet a minimum number of required work references.

Companies have different requirements for character references, and what they accept may vary. This blog will help you choose who to submit as a character reference.

As a general rule, in the UK, you will want to ask for a character reference from someone who works in a well regarded profession (but is not a relative) and has some standing within the community. This means anyone you know, but are not related to, who has a professional background or a role which qualifies them as having “good standing in the community”.

Examples of people who belong to regulated professions are:

  • Accountant 📒
  • Barrister or Solicitor 👩‍⚖️
  • Doctor or Dentist 👩‍⚕️
  • Financial Services Intermediary (e.g. stockbroker, Insurance Broker) 📈
  • Fire Service Official 🚒
  • HR professional 🧑‍💻
  • Licensee of a Pub 🍺
  • Member, Associate or Fellow of a professional body (full list ) 🗂️
  • Nurse 🏥
  • Pharmacist 💊
  • Social worker 👩‍👧‍👦
  • Teacher 🧑‍🏫

While the following are considered people of good standing in the community:

  • Religious official 🛐
  • Director or manager of a company 🧑‍💼
  • Local government officer 🏛️
  • Police officer 👮‍♀️

These are just examples, and there are other roles which qualify people as good character references.

It’s also worth noting that you do not need to know this person in a professional context. Character references from a neighbour who is a teacher or a friend who is a social worker are also acceptable.

For more information about the different types of reference checks, read our guide in Reference checks here.

More top tips for a speedy, streamlined process:

  • Notify the referee. Always let your referee know before you add them so they can look out for the email and consent to their contact details being added. Read our blog on who to submit as a referee if you’re unsure.
  • Add additional referees. Adding an extra referee may mean you get the required number of references more quickly and can start your job sooner. Add another referee on your referee submission page by clicking the "Add" button at the bottom. Unsure who to add? Check out this  for inspiration.
  • What is a referee? A referee is a person who provides you with a reference.

We hope you now feel confident about submitting the best referees for you. All you have to do is add their contact details to your submission page and you will be notified when each referee submits a reference check.

If you have any doubts or questions, we’re always here to help. Simply reach out to us via the live chat in the bottom right corner of the screen or email us at contact@zincwork.com.

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