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Reference Letter
Unlucky Workers
posted on Wednesday, 17 March 2010 12:50

I have been working in the current company for over a year but I plan to go as I can't sustain the emotional style of management.  My performance has been good but I know the manager has a bad habit of holding the salary of leaving staffs for a period longer than statutory requirements and even sometimes won't give the leaving staff reference letter regardless of how good their performance is as he/she treat them as rebel for his/her decision of "go".  I contributed to this co wholeheartedly during my tenure but I don't know what to do if I left without getting the letter.  It sounds absurd and will create problems for job searching.  Shall I leave and take the risk of no letter or do you think if there is any other method to ensure I get what I deserve?


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Anonymous's picture
Posted Thursday, 18 March 2010 12:41 PM

For the statutory regulation, employer must release the last salary to the resigned employee within 7 days starting from the last working day of the employee, otherwise, the employer breach of the employment agreement, the employee can accuse the employer through Labour Department. For another issue of the reference letter, u can just request the company (HR) give u a standard letter of certifying your employment period and job title. No reference letter is not much important. You can ask another manager or senior staff to sign the reference letter which prepared by yourself. Alternatively, u may ask your friend to be your referee. Don't worry too much!

Anonymous's picture
unlucky worker
Posted Thursday, 18 March 2010 12:24 PM

Tks for all of your comments. I am sorry to confuse you. I am just looking for a letter showing my employment record but I discover the manager has record of not giving the staff the letter, or record, regardless of how good they are performing. They just try to give oral promise that they will send back the letter some time after they leave but the staff just keeps waiting and receive nothing. It is a small company and there is no HR dept. I can't ask for the help of other person. That's why I feel very uncomfortable of working in this company and decide to leave as quickly as possible. It has been one year but what if after several years when I know from the reality that I will receive nothing as he/she just want me to provide my services. I don't think the letter, or record, is a sort of management tool to keep the staff. Right?

Career Doctor's picture
Career Doctor  
Posted Thursday, 18 March 2010 11:04 AM

According to the Labour Ordinance by law all companies shall pay their staffs' wages no later than 7 days from their official pay day, or from the last day of any staff's departure, failure of which you can go report it and it's a criminal offence.

So in the end if your current employer / boss don't pay you within 7 days after you've left, go report it to the Labour Department and they'll do the rest for you, give them a lesson!

Regarding the reference letter issue, I can assure you it can't and won't affect your chances of getting a new job. A lot of companies don't have the practice of granting reference letters, some not even employment letters, just verbal offers, but if you have a salary record, and tax returns, those are all proofs.

You deserve a good reference letter? I don't understand that, sorry! No matter how outstanding one's performance was, most companies only write reference letters stating the person's name and title, salary and employment period, that's it! How can it possibly affect your chances of getting another job?

And after all you've only worked in this company for a year, how good of a reference letter can you expect?

Anonymous's picture
Posted Wednesday, 17 March 2010 11:29 PM

I don't think you should let this hold you back. If you have confidence in finding another job, leave anyway. YOu can always ask your colleagues or other superior to be personal reference. Working with emotional management is psychologically damaging as staying in a asylum.

Anonymous's picture
Posted Wednesday, 17 March 2010 10:55 PM

Getting a reference letter from your reluctant manager is difficult and you can try asking your HR dept instead. They may be able to help but note that they may have to ask your manager for his opinion of you. So at the end of the day, at best, you may end up with some cursory mention of your period of stay and that your performance is satisfactory, or something to that effect - not really useful. Potential employer may read such brief reference letter negatively. Therefore, unless the boss is gracious and is willing to help you, there is no point to get his reference letter or testimonial.

I don't think not having a reference letter affects your job search. Don't worry about this and the employers I met so far have not asked for such letter. Most companies will ask for referees (at least two)instead and your network of friends is more important than the reference letter.

Anonymous's picture
Posted Wednesday, 17 March 2010 08:01 PM

Go to the HR and explain them your situation, and request the HR to write an official letter on behalf of your boss as a confirmation for your resignation. Usually the letter from your boss serves only his personal comments on your past performance, with a formal one as an acknowledgement for your leaving received from the HR.

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