Acas, also known as The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service, has produced new guidance on job references. Aimed at both employers and employees, it is based around the most frequently asked questions put to the Acas helpline. It explains what references are and provides information on what they should include, when they are required and how to deal with issues or problems. In particular, the guidance covers the following common questions:
- Does a reference have to be provided?
- What can a reference include?
- Can an employer give a bad reference?
- Can an employer include absence rates relating to sickness in a reference?
Helpfully, the guidance also provides a useful reminder on taking care when a new job offer is conditional upon suitable references – in which case employees may consider waiting on the references being received and approved before resigning from their current job.
If you have any issues with providing a reference, or about one being provided about you, please contact our employment law team.