Referee Checks

Appointing managers shall, as a minimum, require every preferred applicant for a staff appointment to provide a referee from either their current employer or last employer and a referee check(s) undertaken before an offer of appointment is confirmed.

It is good practice but not a strict requirement to undertake three referee checks. In general, for more senior or critical roles with organisational impact, it will be appropriate for three referee checks to be undertaken.

Should the preferred applicant be a current employee or have in the last two years been an employee in the same hiring department then at the discretion of the manager a referee check may be excluded from the section criteria.

Referee contact can only be made with the permission of the prospective applicant.  Contact with the referees of an applicant without the expressed permission of the applicant will breach the Privacy Act 1993.

If the preferred external applicant refuses permission for their current or last employer to be contacted, they must not be contacted. The appointing manager may however, after considering the reasons for refusal, reconsider the preferred external applicant’s suitability for the position. The appointing manager should discuss this circumstance with their HR Advisor.

All referee checks should be recorded and attached to the appointment recommendation which is submitted for approval.

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