An effective interview and selection process should enable the panel to identify the most suitable candidate.
For academic positions, referees are often contacted before finalising the short list of candidates for interview. The purpose of checking references is to validate information obtained about the candidate's employment history, skills and experience and to check your assessment of the candidate's suitability for the role. You should only contact a referee when the candidate has given permission in writing. Check the candidate's application to confirm whether or not they have given permission. You have a responsibility under the Privacy Act to protect the privacy and confidentiality of candidates throughout the recruitment process.
Internal and ex-staff: In some cases, the candidate may be working, or have previously worked, for the University of Otago. You may know their current or former manager. While it may be tempting to contact this manager, you should only do so with the candidate's permission, and only after the candidate has had the opportunity to let their manager know that they have applied for the position. If this manager has not been listed as a referee, you should discuss this with the candidate.