Did you know? 90 percent of hiring managers make their first impression of applicants through their social media accounts — yes, you read that right — 90 percent! Extending from this, one in three employers have admitted to rejecting candidates based on something they found online. Because of this, it is important for you to view your social media profiles as an extension of your application. With that in mind, it may be time for you to do some spring cleaning of your social media profiles to get rid of old dirt. Here is a checklist to help get you started!
- Research Yourself. Start by Googling your name and social media handles to get an idea of whats out there about you. Flag and delete any inappropriate content that could hurt your chances of being hired.
- Privacy Please. Once you’re finished cleaning up the dirt you found, change your social media profile settings to ‘Private.’ This is an easy way to block your content from certain eyes you don’t want seeing it. However, sometimes it is still not enough. Facebook and other social platforms are constantly updating their privacy policies, so don’t be surprised if you see your content out there for the full public to view, even when you thought you were off the map.
- Picture Perfect. Your profile picture gives an instant first impression of you, especially to hiring managers and recruiters. In fact, recruiters spend on average 19% of their time looking at profile pictures, which can be a factor when deciding if an applicant should be dismissed or not. Here are some things to watch out for:
- Not Posting a Picture or Using a Default Picture: These types of images look lazy.
- Using Unformatted or Blurry Images: These images look unprofessional.
- Posting an Image That Is Not of You: Tarnishes Your Personal Brand.
- Uploading an Inappropriate Picture: Do we really need to say more?
What we always say: “If you want the job, you gotta look the part.”
- You Are What You Post: Potential employers might look into what types of topics you post about. Doing so will help them understand more about you as a candidate, including your professionalism and how you might fit into the company culture. Be sure to keep your posts professional and position yourself in a positive light. Delete old posts that may leave a bad impression. Too much to sort through? Let a cleanup app like Social Sweepster do the work for you.
- What Your Friends Post: Even if you are watchful about what you are posting, your friends and followers may not be. Be sure to untag any inappropriate pictures that come up in your search results or under your ‘Photos Of You’ Facebook photo album, which will show all of the photos you are tagged in. That picture of you doing a kegstand? Send your friend a private message asking it to be removed.
- Who and What You Like Tells A Lot About You: One of the top reasons an employer hires someone after checking them out on online is that they show a wide range of interests. However, think twice about certain ones — 48 percent of employers said posts on drinking and other inappropriate activities was a top reason to NOT hire a candidate.
Have any social media profile spring cleaning tips to share? We’d love to hear from you!
Statistics taken from AvidCareerist and Career Savvy.