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A previous employer can be a valuable source of information regarding someone you are considering hiring. While some may refuse to provide any information, many will be happy to share their thoughts and opinions with you. Your goal in talking to a former employer should be to obtain the maximum amount of relevant information in the minimum amount of time.
The attached file contains a sample phone script that can be adapted to your particular needs. But don't be afraid to depart from your prepared script if the conversation takes a different, but useful turn. In that case, the script can serve as a checklist to record information and to ensure that no topics of interest are left unexplored.
The file is in rich text format (RTF) that is suitable for use with most word processing programs used in the Windows environment.
Employee reference phone script
Calling the Former Employer