Most of us have a social media account. Whether you opt to keep it friendly (Facebook or Twitter) or professional (LinkedIn or your company’s website), what you display online can affect your prospects of landing your dream job.
How much? Over 70% of employers are turning to social media to determine if you are the right candidate for their position. They are looking at all social media platforms, not just those with professional profiles. Of those, 57% have found posts, comments or pictures that caused them to reject a candidate. If that seems like a high percentage, it is, and it indicates how important your social media presence is when looking for a new job.
Don’t think I’ve overlooked those of you without social media profiles. Not being on social media can hurt your job hunting prospects as well. Approximately 47% of employers won’t call a candidate for an interview if they can’t find a social media or online presence. If you want to keep your online presence slim but want to make sure prospective employers don’t pass you by, create an accurate and up-to-date profile on LinkedIn.
Last, what you post on social media can not only prevent you from getting your dream job, but it can also get you fired! Many employers are now directing their Human Resources departments to review the social media accounts of their employees to see if any corporate rules are being broken. If they don’t like what they see, you may be next to receive a pink slip!
Here are a few social media pitfalls to avoid:
- Tasteless comments or photos. This includes the excessive use of profanity and pictures where you are less than fully dressed, under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or engaging in any other activity best left private. Always consider whether your desire to post that comment or picture outweighs your desire to get that new job.
- Complaints about your customers, manager, or job. Negative posts about your current job or boss will create a negative impression in the eyes of potential future employers. Negative posts about your customers may cost you not only those you have but also those you could have gotten tomorrow. Even if you have extreme privacy settings on your social media accounts, someone you are connected to might forward your post. A single screenshot can literally determine whether you get that new job.
- Sharing the status of your job search. Unless your employer knows you are looking, you should never post anything about your job search. As noted above, if your employer does not know you are looking and discovers this through your posts, they may terminate your employment on the spot. Searching for a better job when you have a job is one thing; searching for a job when you are unemployed and need money coming in is quite another.
If you’re actively searching for a new job or thinking about doing it soon, inventory your social media accounts and do a little housekeeping. Change profile pictures, delete unfavorable posts and check your privacy settings. Keep your professional profiles up-to-date and make sure everything is accurate, especially things like contact information and work history.
Let Triumph Professional Staffing help you find your dream job, as well as clear the path of any social media obstacles that may be in your way.