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The Role of Social Media When Job Hunting

If you can’t figure out why you aren’t getting interviews, it could be your social media presence that is to blame. Social media has become an important part of hiring. Not only are employers looking to find out whether you have a professional presence, but there could even be other accounts that you don’t know about out there. The Role of Social Media When Job Hunting

What Are Employers Looking For?

Employers are looking for a professional account that appears to be active and that doesn’t have any glaring red flags. They may look to confirm your employment and review your posts to see if you appear to fit in with their company culture. For the most part, they’re looking to make sure there aren’t any significant issues.

In a tech field, employers are more likely to have internet savvy managers and employees, and may be more likely to do some online digging preemptively before calling an applicant in. Tech employees cost a lot to train; anything that can ensure a better fit may be used.

Common Social Media Issues When Looking for a Job

  • Not being the first result. If you don’t have a social media account or your social media is inactive, there could be another person with your name in your location. If this person doesn’t have a photo of themselves as their profile picture it could be assumed they are you.
  • Having inappropriate public posts. Something that is a joke between you and your friends could appear to be seriously offensive to someone who doesn’t understand your sense of humor.
  • Not updating your accounts. If you haven’t updated your education and your employment in some time, employers won’t be able to verify your information when they check it.

Actions to Take Now

Nearly every social media account has privacy settings. Set your privacy so that only your friends and family can view your posts. Update your profile with a professional image of yourself and make sure all of your profile information is up to date. Take some time to review your posts to remove anything you feel doesn’t adequately describe you as a person. Pay special attention to professional accounts, such as anything on LinkedIn.

If there is someone with your identical name who you believe may engage in behaviors not acceptable to employers, consider adding your middle name to both your profiles and your resumes. This will avoid confusion.

It doesn’t take a lot to clean up your social media accounts, but it can make a big difference. Employers today definitely look towards social media as a “pre-interview” of sorts, and if your social media isn’t something you’d show an employer during an interview, you may want to make some adjustments.