Job Searching and Social Networking
Many of us use Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+ to stay socially connected, but have you considered how these sites can be used for your job search?
- Your online profiles and accounts go beyond the confines of your resume and allow employers to find out more about you
- These sites also allow you to learn about job opportunities and network with current and former employers
- Networking is a crucial component of any job search and online networking has become a vital tool allowing you to build and expand important connections
It is important to remember not to sabotage your job search. Approximately 50% of all employers are checking you out online as part of their screening process (this number continues to grow!)
Nearly 33% have discovered information that has stopped them from considering a candidate.
Is there anything about your online presence that you wouldn’t want a prospective employer to see? Use your network’s privacy settings but understand the internet is a public forum and the image you project is the one that prospective employers will view.
It’s not all bad news though – a survey by CareerBuilder indicated that 29% of hiring managers found a positive aspect of someone’s profile that lead to them offering that candidate the job.
Dos and Don’ts of Job Searching and Social Networks
- Don’t be invisible online. Create and actively engage with social media to increase your profile with prospective employers
- Do remove all inappropriate or unprofessional content from your profiles. Ensure that the information you post highlights your accomplishments and positive traits
- Don’t use an inappropriate profile picture. Nothing is worse than a badly cropped bathroom selfie. Dress professionally and have a friend take a quality photo of you
- Do make sure your spelling and grammar are correct. Much like your resume, have someone proofread your profiles thoroughly
- Don’t forget to adjust your privacy settings. Always read and understand the privacy settings of every site and be sure to use customized settings (if available) to allow you the most control of your profile. Remember though, that even after you delete content or deactivate your account, material still resides on the server of the site
- Do keep your stories straight. The information about you should be consistent across all platforms; if your resume says one thing, your LinkedIn profile can’t say another
Using social media is your introduction to a potential employer, so let social media work for you and not against you; build your personal brand and develop strong social networks.