“I can see from your online profile that you like puppies and drink driving – how will this help you become a valued member of our team here?”
Ok, while you hope you never have to ask that question or one like it when interviewing new staff, there is a serious discussion to be had about social media and how it’s used by recruiters to assess candidates and narrow down lists. Similarly candidates must be aware of how they can use their social media profiles in a positive light to reinforce their applications.
Social media is an opportunity to express ourselves as individuals, it is also important to be realistic. If a business is looking to hire a recent graduate in what is already a demanding market, sometimes they just need a reason not to hire you. In a
If you want to separate your social life from your ‘candidate’ life, here are 7 ideas to get started with….
# 1. Review your privacy settings on Facebook – make sure you set everything so only your friends can see your updates. This way, prospective employers won’t know that you were at an all-night party the night before your big interview!
# 2. In your Facebook privacy settings, you can also go back and reset your posts so everything from the past is made private. To do this go to Privacy Settings via the icon beside the home page on the top right of your Facebook account. Open the Privacy page on the left and Limit the audience for posts you’ve shared with friends or Public.
# 3. Have a rule where you don’t post anything into your social media account(s) that you would not want your Granny to see. Just because you have only shared it with your friends does not mean it won’t travel.
# 4. Review your activity on LinkedIn and ensure that you come across as the consummate professional. Ask yourself…are you networking with the right groups on LinkedIn and connected to some key leaders/influencers in your field?
- Get active, update your LinkedIn profile to ensure it is 100% completed and your past experience details are correct but written to benefit your bid for your new position.
- Ask connections for recommendations – these are endorsements as to your employability and when they come from the right people, they are as powerful as references.
- Add your LinkedIn profile to your CV – just make sure that there’s enough data available for those who may not be connected to you to see that you are right for the job.
# 5. Are you connecting and engaging with your peers and industry influencers and experts on Twitter? Twitter is a great platform for getting noticed by the right people and showing your passion and interests.
# 6. Blogging – have you considered starting a blog? Create unique content that helps you stand out from the crowd. Use your social media accounts, LinkedIn and LinkedIn groups to promote your posts. If you are engaging with industry key influencers and leaders on areas of interest and relevance they will start to pay attention to what you share and promote online.
# 7. Another straightforward way to assess your online presence is simply to search for your name in Google and see what comes up. And if you are not happy with what you see, neither will a recruiter.
The same report referred to earlier discusses how more and more businesses have identified social media as the best channel to post vacancies and look for staff. With this in mind, you must ask yourself if you are following the right companies’ pages or indeed are linked online to the recruitment agencies and educational institutes that are of interest to you.
So when it comes to using social media, we’re not saying become a completely different online person overnight. Simply use your judgement and put yourself in the recruiter’s shoes. Are you a credible candidate for your dream job?
Images: ”Human resources, CRM and social media concept – officer looking for employee represented by icon. Gender discrimination in employees selection. /Shutterstock.com“
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