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  #21  
Old 27.01.2015, 13:54
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Re: Reference letter, closing paragraph advice

In the bad days employers could write phrases like "he took a lot of trouble over his work" which meant he was very slow. Today these hidden meanings are forbidden.

What most employers look for is the phrase, "we are fully satisfied with his work and behaviour. wir sind mit vollsten zufrieden mit der Arbeit und das Verhalten.

Vongillus, I read that you have requested this intermediate reference http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zwischenzeugnis, and to me it looks like you are now job hunting. If the company is doing well, you can't expect them to give you a glowing reference, it would look like they were pleased you were leaving!

More Googling for you here, http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arbeitszeugnis
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  #22  
Old 27.01.2015, 14:49
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Re: Reference letter, closing paragraph advice

How important are intermediate reference letters in the grand scheme of things?

Let's say you work for the same company for 5 years, but of course over that time there's various restructuring and changes of job duties. Job title officially stays the same as does the boss, but duties shift around. Performance reviews all great.

Any need for an intermediate letter with any of those changes? If so, why? Does a request for an intermediate letter automatically freak out management/HR into thinking you're job hunting? Just wondering, as I'd never heard of such letters until I moved to Switzerland.
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  #23  
Old 27.01.2015, 22:09
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Certainly at a well-known Swiss bank commonly referred to with a 2-letter acronym, these letters are automatically generated based on a standard MS Word template where the manager ticks various boxes according mainly to recent annual performance ratings.

The only free-text areas were for 5-8 bullet points describing the employee's main responsibilities/tasks, another 3-4 bullet points for any special work or projects the employee completed, and an optional 1-2 liner section to describe the employee's relevant special talents - if any (this might include things like being a quick learner, or being a great team builder).

The manager would send this off to HR to generate and they would also check to ensure the outcome matched the recent yearly appraisals. Sometimes it comes back for discussion and adjustment.

I do have some sympathy with employers over this - they risk getting sued if the reference contains something the employee doesn't like, so they use very bland statements that look harmless - but all employers read between the lines and understand the code (performed to our satisfaction / great satisfaction / very great satisfaction etc).

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How important are intermediate reference letters in the grand scheme of things?
Usual advice is to ask for interim reference on change of role or change of manager. If you don't, when you eventually do leave, you might have a single reference for many years work - which cannot possibly reflect the many great things you did and achieved during that time.

Last edited by 3Wishes; 03.02.2015 at 10:06. Reason: merging successive posts
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  #24  
Old 03.02.2015, 09:56
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Re: Reference letter, closing paragraph advice

I have also just been through the process of getting a word change:
If your boss doesn't want to make a change, I would invest time and effort elsewhere.
I use referees with contact phone and email numbers (ask them in advance!!)- this could be from a client rather than your own company. It shows the employer that you are happy for people to talk about you.
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  #25  
Old 03.02.2015, 10:08
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Re: Reference letter, closing paragraph advice

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Do you have the German wording?
"Die Luecke, die Herr G hinterliess ersetzte ihn voll und ganz."
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  #26  
Old 03.02.2015, 12:33
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Re: Reference letter, closing paragraph advice

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"We are issuing this interim reference at the request of M. XXX. We would like to take this opportunity to thank him for his good contribution and wish him all the best and every success for the future."
Change "every success for the future" to "continued success for the future".
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  #27  
Old 01.07.2015, 15:31
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Re: Reference letter, closing paragraph advice

I hope those who have experience in these matters can give me some advice / opinion on the opening and ending paragraphs of my draft reference letter. Luckily I'm in the situation where my boss is being quite decent about it. Below is the draft of what he wants to say, I changed some details for privacy sakes

Thanks in advance

[I]"To whom it may concern

Mr. Slim Kat, born 01/01/1922 has joined Kit Kat Services (KKS) at its creation in 2000 as assistant of the -------- Management.
KKS is a purpose build company with the goal to support a fleet of 22 ships for the national peanut company in Brazil.
Mr. Slim Kat is a licensed Ship Engineer with an in-depth know-how on administrative and legal records requirements and documentation management. Mr. Slim Kat’s duties and responsibilities were as follows:

• Blah
• blah.

Mr. Slim Kat was working very precise and structured, despite the challenging environment of the operation in Brazil. He was flexible and adjusted himself to the permanent changing requirements and tasks. He has established himself as a valuable source of know-how when it comes to administrative and legal ship records requirements, document management and the specific IT management tool.

Mr Slim Kat’s behaviour with superiors, colleagues, clients and suppliers was always friendly, correct and solution-driven and his work was very appreciated by everybody.

Due to the current economic situation in Brazil caused by the decrease of the price of oil, the fleet of ships in operation has been drastically reduced and therefore KKS has to terminate the contract of Mr. Slim Kat.

We regret to let Mr. Slim Kat go and we wish him all the best for his future career".
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  #28  
Old 02.07.2015, 07:49
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Re: Reference letter, closing paragraph advice

There is a company online that does Reference letter Reviews.
I assume that your reference letter is in German.


From my perspective it sounds pretty good, but I would need
to see the German Translation.


Things like "good" and "very good" as well as "continued success" make a huge difference.
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  #29  
Old 02.07.2015, 09:53
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Re: Reference letter, closing paragraph advice

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There is a company online that does Reference letter Reviews.
I assume that your reference letter is in German.


From my perspective it sounds pretty good, but I would need
to see the German Translation.


Things like "good" and "very good" as well as "continued success" make a huge difference.

Thanks for the review and info.


The reference letter which is still "work in progress" is in English. I prefer an English one as it would be better if I need to supply it to international non Swiss companies.


However that raises another point, could I request a German version intended for local use, logically that imo would be better received by local Swiss companies.
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  #30  
Old 02.08.2015, 13:46
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Re: Reference letter, closing paragraph advice

You have a right to receive a reference letter in the local language of the Kanton in which you work!
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