I've had several job interviews recently. Typically, the potential employer will ask for a page listing some specified number of individual references. I have no problem adding quality contacts to this page.

However, I'm wondering how I can make the best use of this page. Typically I include only basic information: my own contact information, as well as the name, job title, and contact information of my references.

I've been wondering if it would be helpful to include additional information such as a short sentence describing how I know the contact. I imagine this could be useful to the potential employer, as they would know what kinds of questions that person could answer well. For example:

Dr. X, Lab Manager, University of Atlantis.

Dr. X is a frequent customer of my service and is familiar with the quality of services I provide.

Would this, or any other kind of information, strengthen the value of my references page?

2 Answers 2


There's no harm in including details about how your references are related to you. In the end you are giving the hiring team information in how they are connected to you and to make sure they only contact the references they feel are suitable for the role. For a method to do that, this webpage I found was quite helpful:

  • On the left side of the page list the references’ name, job title (now or when you worked for them), name of company they work for, phone number and email address.
  • On the right side of that listing insert the reference’s relationship to you such as “Manager for 5 years”.

The more information you give the hiring team, the less time you waste of theirs and the more likely they will consider you in a better light. However, do make sure that you only include information that is relevant to the job


Would this, or any other kind of information, strengthen the value of my references page?

No. The only important information on this page is the contact information - make sure it is up to date and correct.

Instead, when asked for X references, make sure they are the best X references you can get. Contact the individuals first. Make sure they know that they may be called, and make sure they are ready and willing to give you a great reference.

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