According to a 2018 CareerBuilder survey, 70% of employers use social media to screen candidates during the hiring process. About 43% of employers use social media to check on current employees.
Employers do this to screen you as a professional and as a person. Culture fit is huge to companies, especially smaller organizations. Hiring a culture fit is vital to employee retention, company reputation, productivity, and quality of work. To sum it up— your personality is important to them, so it’s important that it’s showcased well. Read on for a few social media do’s and don’ts while you’re on the hunt.
Facebook is booming with networking opportunities and the chance to share your accomplishments, but it could also negatively impact your career if used incorrectly. It’s important to keep things in check by making sure you don’t post tasteless comments or photos, plagiarize, complain about your job or boss or talk about your job hunt. It’s important to keep your personal brand appropriate and make sure it’s something you’d feel comfortable with your employer seeing.
What to Delete
A general rule of thumb is to just keep it clean. Avoid political commentary, general profanity, and add anything that could be seen as a display of poor character. When in doubt, make your profile private. It’s an easy step to take and could help you snag your dream job.
One way to leverage Facebook to help aid your job search is to post relevant, well-written articles that appeal to you. Posting articles that you find interesting can show you are an educated, informed job seeker who cares about current events and being in the loop.
We get it… Partying is fun. Dancing the night away is the best. But, photo evidence of it doesn’t help much in the way of making yourself appear responsible. If your Instagram feed is filled with evidence of your drunken escapades, you may not look as great as the applicant sharing photos of their world travels or cute shots of their friends and family.
Who are you, really?
If you were the employer, how would you want your candidate’s feed to look? You’d probably look for personality shots, things that give you a sense of who they are. Maybe you’d want to see a photo of them cheering for their favorite football team, different hikes they’ve taken, or places they’ve visited. Take that mindset and apply it to your own feed. Clean up what warrants cleaning, and make sure to put your best face forward.
In your job search, LinkedIn can be your greatest tool in getting an employer (or recruiter’s) attention. However, the rules of thumb are a little bit different here… LinkedIn is used predominantly as a means of networking, so the way you present yourself on your profile needs to follow a different set of guidelines. For example, your profile picture should be tasteful, professional, and high-res. Most importantly, it needs to be of you.
The sections of your profile that outline your experience should be thoughtfully written, highlighting your specific areas of expertise and adequately summarizing your work experience. This is your opportunity to— for lack of a better word— brag! Let viewers know what you’re good at, mention your accomplishments, and don’t be shy about it.
The Most Important Thing?
Be yourself. It sounds corny, but employers will connect with who you are first, and your experience second. Don’t whitewash your profile because you think that’s what employers want to see. They want to see YOU. So, pull up your profiles, trim away the nonsense, clean up those old (and often, embarrassing) photos from college, and watch the job offers roll in.