How and Why to Politely Decline the "May We Contact Your Employer" Question

"But you already have everything that you will need…."

"It will violate my privacy."

"This is not needed…."

These are all the wrong ways to declining this question. It will not serve the purpose and may also lead to other questions. Finding a new job while you're up to date makes the entire job search process a little more convenient if your current job doesn't capture your up-to-date resume and try to jump on the boat.

After all, you may not find a better job, and you may be spending another happy decade in your current company. If you are currently employed and looking for a new job at the same time, you probably don't want these two things to mix.

It is generally not nice for your current employer to know that you are trying to find a new job. It's not a discussion of a water cooler, and it's definitely not something you would like to discuss with your boss or supervisor.

If the company you're looking to work with hires someone else, your current employer may not like you looking for new job opportunities. They can choose to give you the freedom to take advantage of new opportunities.

You are now stuck in a terrible and uncomfortable work environment, or worse, they decide to terminate you before you have a chance to quit. Sometimes employers respond very well to an employee looking for another job, but many times the employer's first move is to create an emergency exit plan. Once your company is aware that you have one foot behind the door, they can open it for you before you're ready to go.

Should someone tell their boss that they are leaving?

For those of you who are still undecided, the answer is no. If your boss no longer realizes you're leaving and you have a great relationship with him, don't take any chances. If you don't have a great rapport with your boss and can trust him to help you find a job while protecting your current position and position in the company - which is rare - you shouldn't take it out. You should get help from an accounting firm so you can be prepared in near future.

Companies with experienced recruiting departments understand the negative consequences of preventing a cat's release from harm and understand your hesitation with it. Like most things, the answer is less important than the delivery. There is a diplomatic way around this and a crude way. Remember that rude behavior receives a negative impulse and tends to get worse over time, so a single moment can destroy the interview process.

Potential employers want to contact previous employers to understand your personality and work style. All these answers say that it is difficult to work with you and maybe you have something to hide. These are not good ways to answer a question. In none of these cases have you given a reason for "no," except for your personal problems, which you need to work on. Avoid answering the question "can we contact your current employer" in any of these ways.

"You know, I haven't talked to my employer about my job search yet." I hope you understand that I would feel more comfortable if we had stayed a little earlier. Until then, I will be happy to provide you with references and recommendation letters to help you get to know my work ethic and personality a little better. "

"I have a great professional relationship with my current employer!" But since they don't know what I'm looking for, could you speak to one of my previous employers instead? "(Saying no to direct question, but offering yes to unspoken demand is a strong negotiating strategy).

"I will be happy if you contact my current employer during the process." I have a fantastic relationship with my current employer and would not want them to know of his departure before I have the opportunity to discharge him in person. "

All these answers say it is "never," but "not now." This is huge because "never" feels a little dark and unreliable. Almost everyone fathoms the need for discretion, but not secrecy. Secrecy may indicate dishonesty. Are you lying about your salary? Are you still planning to resign? Problems with performance?

There is no word "no" in any of these answers. Even if you told them they didn't need to contact your employer, you never used the word "no."


So the question "can we contact your current employer" may not be a dreadful one. If you are well prepared for it, it will be easier to react. Remember that recruiting departments understand the nuances and sensitivities of job search. If you need help with the recruiting process, especially if you're in a current job you don't love and need a team to support you and advise you to employers, try contacting a recruiting agency.

Written By:
Salman Rundhawa
Salman Rundhawa is the founder of Filing Taxes. Salman provides valuable tax planning, accounting, and income tax preparation services in Toronto, Mississauga, Oakville, and Hamilton.

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