Social Media Can Help or Hurt Your Job Search
From Facebook and Twitter to Snapchat and Instagram, social media has become a part of our everyday lives. So what are ways it can help (or hurt) your job search? Here are some thoughts to consider.
Benefits of Social Media
There are a variety of benefits using different facets of social media when searching for employment. The internet is the easiest and most conducive way to let the world know you are in the market for a new job. And, if used correctly, you can promote yourself in an appealing way to employers and, hopefully, land that interview.
Here are some ways you can use social media to your advantage:
- Establish Credibility:
- Your profile photo can create a positive or negative first impression. Select an appropriate snapshot that includes your face (not a picture of your car or your latest vacation). You may even consider using the same image on all your social media profiles. You want a prospective employer to know they have found the right person.
- It’s a good idea to review your write-up (About Me section ) on each profile to be certain all information is correct and appropriate. It can be a little casual as to fit the medium (i.e.: you can write that you love ‘Game of Thrones’) but be mindful of any information that may seem inappropriate (i.e.: ‘Great guy looking for love.’) even if it was just written as a joke.
- Review your posts. If you have photos you wouldn’t want a prospective employer to see, delete or hide them from the public. You may also want to ask your friends not to tag you or you can turn off the tagging option on some platforms.
- Post things that reflect who you are – motivational quotes, charities you support, inspirational stories, funny (appropriate) videos, musical inspirations, etc.
- Be mindful of the comments you make and the posts you like. Use language that is positive, knowledgeable, and grammatically correct. Be selective as to what you discuss, mostly focusing on the positive.
- Network: Use who you know. Search through your connections and ask for recommendations and referrals. Maintaining business relationships online can help you gather information about who is hiring and possibly find out some of their interests to use as an icebreaker when meeting face to face.
- Privacy Measures: If you are also using your social media accounts as an avenue to connect with friends and family, check your privacy blocks to be sure they are the only people viewing your “legendary” photos of last weekend. Social media is a fantastic way to share your life, and fortunately there are measures allowing you to separate your job search profile.
There are also a few ways social media can hinder your job search. Pay close attention and make adjustments to avoid these pitfalls:
- Not Staying Current: Use your page to display up to date material, including your most recent resume information (on platforms like LinkedIn). Displaying old information may appear that you are no longer searching for employment or have recently found other employment. It could also give the impression that you are not detail oriented enough to keep your information current.
- Oversharing: Sometimes, not saying anything, is saying enough. Social media sites are packed with political views, controversial dialogue, and other unnecessary rhetoric which can be unappealing to hiring managers. Posting controversial thoughts and opinions on scandalous topics can be a turn off to prospective employers.
- Not Connecting: While social media outlets can help you network, if you are not using these resources to your advantage it can be hard to connect with hiring managers. An unwillingness to spend some time meeting, networking and connecting with new people will not benefit your search. Remember, the greater number of views to your profile, the better your chances of discovering potential job opportunities.
Have additional questions regarding the use of social media to its fullest potential, our Accent Professional Recruiting team is happy to help. Contact us today (804) 359-9416