Reference Guide – Who Can I Use

Who can I use as a reference?

You are required to provide us with details of two references to contact

Ideally 2 work references

  1. From most recent position
  2. Any other position but no older than 5 years ago

Personal references

If you have not worked in a second position, we are able to accept a personal reference.

  • It must be someone that you have known for at least a year
  • It cannot be from a family member

It can be from a friend/acquaintance who holds a recognised profession – from the list below:

We view people from particular professions as having an upstanding reputation, and by extension, their word is considered trustful. The government accepts their word as a confirmation of identity, when it comes to things like providing passports.

  • Accountant
  • Airline pilot
  • Bank or building society official
  • Barrister
  • Chairperson or director of a limited company
  • Chiropodist
  • Councillor, for example local or county
  • Civil servant
  • Dentist
  • Director, manager or personnel officer of a VAT-registered company
  • Engineer with professional qualifications
  • Financial services intermediary, for example a stockbroker or insurance broker
  • Fire service official
  • Funeral director
  • Insurance agent of a recognised company
  • Journalist
  • Justice of the Peace
  • Legal secretary
  • Licensee of a public house
  • Local government officer
  • Manager or personnel officer of a limited company
  • Member, associate or fellow of a professional body
  • Member of Parliament
  • Merchant Navy officer
  • Minister of a recognised religion
  • Nurse (RGN or RMN)
  • Officer of the armed services
  • Optician
  • Paralegal
  • Person with honours, for example an OBE or MBE
  • Pharmacist
  • Police officer
  • Post Office official
  • President or secretary of a recognised organisation
  • Salvation Army officer
  • Social worker
  • Solicitor
  • Surveyor
  • Teacher or lecturer
  • Trade union officer
  • Travel agent (qualified)
  • Valuer or auctioneer
  • Warrant Officers and Chief Petty Officers

Academic reference

If you do not have 2 work references, we can accept an academic reference from a school, college or university that you have attended

If you have work references

We can also accept references from somewhere you have volunteered such as in a charity shop, work placement or a case worker etc.

To whom it may concern references

  • If you provide a reference that you already have from an employer, it must be on official headed paper.
  • The referee must be contactable to confirm that the details in the reference are correct and be willing to sign and date the reference