Agency post-offer reference form Agency post-offer reference form
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  1. #1

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    Angry Agency post-offer reference form

    Got an offer, but instead of the usual standard paperwork coming through I've instead received a 'registration form' and 'reference' form (alongside the usual requests for passport, driving license, NI number). Actual proper contract is to follow.

    The 'registration' form contains a load of 'standard' terms and conditions for working with the agent, including clauses a-plenty about client direction and control that I know will give my IR35 advisor kittens, so I know I'll have to get that checked and (probably) amended to hell before even thinking of grabbing a pen - but the reference form on the other hand seems to think we're back in the distant past where it was much easier to get really detailed references about every aspect of the ex-'employee' (yes, it does say employee/employer). This form is a full side of A4 asking very detailed questions and wants a named employee of your ex-employer to fill it in. They want 2 of these.
    Quite aside from the fairly high probability of it being a 'just 2 references' fishing exercise I'm supposed to fall for, it's an unreasonable request in today's contract market considering no one's allowed to give these sort of details any more for fear of litigation.

    I was wondering if anyone here's found a good way to deal with this nonsense? - on previous contracts I provided my accountants and/or agencies contact details for referencing purposes, but there's no way they could fill in this sort of form (NB: I do want the contract so I'm not looking to start a war with the agent over this).

  2. #2

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    northernladuk's Avatar
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    Have you actually spoken to your agent?

    We've no idea so you are going to have to do some digging so wouldn't it be wise to do so and at least find out what the score is. If you tell them you can only put past agents on the form they could drop it there and then. Easy.

    The other possibility is there is genuine requirement from the client in which case you tell them you can only put your agents on, they say OK, you do that and away you go. Easy.

    Do some legwork first before fretting.

    EDIT : You are aware there is a bloody massive sticky about references and the ways to deal with it are posted on there ad infinitum?
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  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by man View Post
    Got an offer, but instead of the usual standard paperwork coming through I've instead received a 'registration form' and 'reference' form (alongside the usual requests for passport, driving license, NI number). Actual proper contract is to follow.
    You haven't got an offer. Not yet anyway.
    See You Next Tuesday

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by northernladuk View Post
    Have you actually spoken to your agent?

    We've no idea so you are going to have to do some digging so wouldn't it be wise to do so and at least find out what the score is. If you tell them you can only put past agents on the form they could drop it there and then. Easy.

    The other possibility is there is genuine requirement from the client in which case you tell them you can only put your agents on, they say OK, you do that and away you go. Easy.

    Do some legwork first before fretting.

    EDIT : You are aware there is a bloody massive sticky about references and the ways to deal with it are posted on there ad infinitum?
    Thanks, you were spot on and this was helpful. They'll accept that and chase previous agents for me if I provide agent contact details on the form and leave the rest blank (even though the form is very clearly designed for me to get an ex-employer line manager to fill in and then send back to them).

    Yes I'm aware of the sticky and have read through all of its posts before (just couldn't remember anything specific to this situation and didn't want to re-read the entire thread as last time took a good number of hours to work through!)

    @ Lance, fair enough, although it feels like semantics as in my experience it makes no odds (the client can pull the contract at any time even after the ink has tried).

    TLDR: Talked to the agent, agreed to ignore the form contents and provide the usual. Still baffled by said form.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by man View Post

    @ Lance, fair enough, although it feels like semantics as in my experience it makes no odds (the client can pull the contract at any time even after the ink has tried).
    True. But I tell the agent I'm still on the market until I get a signed contract in front of me.
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  6. #6

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    Play it by ear. I tend to be a bit more forgiving of (probably) spurious attempts to get references by agents if they actually land me a contract.

    Just make sure there is an actual contract coming first.

  7. #7

    More fingers than teeth

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    Any formal references should be from previous agencies. They only need the agency to confirm the dates you worked from and to and for which client.

    Just ring up previous agencies for contacts.
    I'm alright Jack

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