1. #1
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    Default letters of recommendation

    i wanted to get the guys opinion on here that are already on and have been on for a while. how far does a letter of recommendation from a chief get you in a hiring process. is it really looked at by HR and the department or is it just set aside ignored??

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    Default Letter

    As one who has looked.....We look at everything!!
    Respectfully,
    Jay Dudley
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    Any job that I have ever applied for, if I thought a letter of recommendation would help, I threw it in the initial application package, it certainly cant hurt nor would it harm you, as long as Aunt Maggie or Grandma isn't the one who wrote the letter.

    I have several former employers whom I use for this purpose- they are fully aware of my qualifications and experience, and state as much in their letters. They always include their full names, mailing addresses, emails and telephone numbers, and welcome contacts from the potential employer for further information or reference.
    "Loyalty Above all Else. Except Honor."

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    Default Recommendation Letters

    Question: Will it help to present letters of recommendations from prominent people, such as a former police chief, academy instructors, my priest or other firemen in the area? Will it carry any weight at all?

    On most oral boards, the raters are from other departments. It is my experience that although the raters might thumb through and glance at any attached documents they seldom if ever read them. And come on, if you're going to attach a letter of recommendation, they’re easy to get and it’s not going to say anything bad but only glowing words about you.

    Save a tree, the raters will not read these volumes. Don’t send us on a treasure hunt to find your great stuff.

    I'm a one-page resume guy for entry level without a cover letter, not in a binder or folder. Do not give us a book. Keep it simple.

    Question: If you are going to attach any letters of recommendation following the first page how many is appropriate. I am thinking maybe two. I realize that there is a very good chance they won't read it but wouldn't it still look just a little better to have a couple of them?

    Reply: How about none! Again, I'm a one-page stand-alone resume guy. Don't give me a book. And, if you have already listed your education, experience and certifications on your application and resume, why do you need to attach them; unless they were requested or you're going to a chief’s interview where there is more time with each candidate.

    Many entry level and promotional candidates have told me they were complemented on having just one, as in one page only, resume.
    As you know everyone becomes an expert on these issues. They will fill you head with all these crazy ideas and stuff. And because "They said (I've been trying to find "they" for 30 years) you needed to have all that extra stuff or the other candidates are going to get ahead of you.” So, how is all this extra stuff going to really help you?

    Candidates have been told by firefighter friends to go ahead a hand out a resume with recommendations letters to their oral board panel even though the instructions stated they were not accepting them. Because, it would make him stand out. It did. But not in the way he was expecting. Keep it Simple.

    If you make it to the Chiefs oral that could be a time to include any letters.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptBob View Post
    Question: Will it help to present letters of recommendations from prominent people, such as a former police chief, academy instructors, my priest or other firemen in the area? Will it carry any weight at all?

    On most oral boards, the raters are from other departments. It is my experience that although the raters might thumb through and glance at any attached documents they seldom if ever read them. And come on, if you're going to attach a letter of recommendation, they’re easy to get and it’s not going to say anything bad but only glowing words about you.

    Save a tree, the raters will not read these volumes. Don’t send us on a treasure hunt to find your great stuff.

    I'm a one-page resume guy for entry level without a cover letter, not in a binder or folder. Do not give us a book. Keep it simple.

    Question: If you are going to attach any letters of recommendation following the first page how many is appropriate. I am thinking maybe two. I realize that there is a very good chance they won't read it but wouldn't it still look just a little better to have a couple of them?

    Reply: How about none! Again, I'm a one-page stand-alone resume guy. Don't give me a book. And, if you have already listed your education, experience and certifications on your application and resume, why do you need to attach them; unless they were requested or you're going to a chief’s interview where there is more time with each candidate.

    Many entry level and promotional candidates have told me they were complemented on having just one, as in one page only, resume.
    As you know everyone becomes an expert on these issues. They will fill you head with all these crazy ideas and stuff. And because "They said (I've been trying to find "they" for 30 years) you needed to have all that extra stuff or the other candidates are going to get ahead of you.” So, how is all this extra stuff going to really help you?

    Candidates have been told by firefighter friends to go ahead a hand out a resume with recommendations letters to their oral board panel even though the instructions stated they were not accepting them. Because, it would make him stand out. It did. But not in the way he was expecting. Keep it Simple.

    If you make it to the Chiefs oral that could be a time to include any letters.
    I would never tell a kid to send in a novel about his life, but a couple of letters of recommendation could not hurt. In fact, here on the East Coast, once you get to the Oral Interview, you are asked for two or three letters of recommendation from most Departments. Who knows, those on the board might know the guy/girl who wrote your letter and it will be a plus, although there is that chance the board member does not like the letter writer. Of course if someone is told no letters of recommendation are needed, they should take that as none are wanted and to leave them out of their packet, as following basic instructions and not freelanceing is a key part of the fire service.

    Bob, you really need to clarify to these kids that you are speaking for the way things are generally done on the West Coast, and that your advice is no where near universal. As I have received many offers of employment with major departments by doing things that totally contradict your little "nuggets".
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    Quote Originally Posted by nyckftbl View Post
    LOL....dont you people have anything else to do besides b*tch about our b*tching?

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    You always have to be careful of who you ask.

    People may think that the writer is a TOTAL idiot.

    I wouldn't ask my chief for a letter of reccomendation. If I impress him, it wouldn't be a hard chore.

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    I am not a big fan of letters of recommendation. I have yet to read one that says this guy is a knucklehead.

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