Why You Should Do A Social Media Clean-Up Before Job Hunting
Social media sites, from Snapchat to Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn, provide an online glimpse into your life. What you post serves as a picture of you—from your friends and interests to your job and education history. When you’re looking for a job, it’s important to remember that one of the first ways many employers learn about you is by searching your online profiles.
Careerbuilder.com estimates that 70% of potential employers look at applicants’ social media posts. The article mentions that some of the things these employers found deterred them from asking qualified candidates to come in for interviews.
For that reason, it’s important to the time to create an online presence that represents you well, personally and professionally. When you’re reviewing your profiles, remember that your social media posts can go back for years—to a time when a younger you didn’t stop to think about possible ramifications before posting.
So what should you avoid in the future—and delete from the past?
With 54% of employers saying they’d found incriminating information that kept them from hiring a candidate, it’s important to avoid comments or photos that:
- Are culturally inappropriate or discriminatory
- Speak negatively about prior employers
- Share confidential information from prior employers
- Show poor communication skills
- Link candidates to illegal behavior
Be certain that your education and work history is accurately represented, as well. It’s easy for an employer to contact a former employer or educational institution to check your credentials. And know that nothing is ever truly deleted. If it was on social media once, it could still be out there. Set your privacy settings to keep your posts from being shared. You may also want to block people from making comments on your posts. While you can control what you post, you cannot control people’s reactions to it.
While social media used improperly can hurt your job chances, a beneficial online presence can actually make you stand out.
CareerBuilder says that job hunters can create a strong, positive social media presence by adding information that supports their experience and qualifications for employment. It adds that creative ways to get noticed by employers include making strategic connections with people who you respect and want to work with. If there’s a company that you hope to work for, follow it on social media. And be sure to show your true, dedicated self---seek out hiring managers and ask them direct questions. Show that you truly are interested in a career with their company.
Have questions about how you can clean up your social media presence? Contact Argosy University’s career services department to learn more tips on how to best promote yourself to potential employers.