Why Your Facebook Profile May Be Stopping You Landing Your Dream Job

By Lior Tal

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Why Your Facebook Profile May Be Stopping You Landing Your Dream Job

Whether you're stuck in a rut or aspire to get yourself a new role someplace better, starting out on a job hunt can be quite a challenge. You may have the right skills and the perfect amount of experience to aim higher, but did you know that your social media reputation could be coming between you and that dream job?

In the present digital age where the whole world is connected through social networks such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, your social media profiles are also assessed by many prospective employers and recruiters. And it isn’t just your clean LinkedIn profile that they are checking but rather users’ Facebook and Twitter accounts where users are prone to being less careful about what they post. Consider the following data from recent surveys:

  • 93% of recruiters are likely to check your social media profiles (JobVite)
  • 51% of employers review candidates’ social media and 51% found content that led them not to hire the candidate (CareerBuilder)
  • 46% passed on users with inappropriate and provocative content (CareerBuilder)
  • 41% passed on candidates with content that includes reference to alcohol or drugs (CareerBuilder)

To really stand out from other applicants, you need to focus on cleaning up your overall online reputation as well. And no, setting high privacy level preventing people outside your circle of friends from viewing your account - or even changing your name - does not work. It only raises suspicions about things you might be hiding.

Irrespective of which industry you work in or what your job profile is, competition amongst candidates is fierce. For each job there can be hundreds of applicants – sometimes, even more. A great CV / Resume, exemplary work experience and top grades can only take you so far when being considered for a new job. Companies today are getting increasingly picky and selective about the kind of talent they hire.

Virtually every company, from startups to established big firms, is looking for talent that reflects the personality of its own brand. Interviews rarely tell the whole story about a potential candidate’s personality – but social media can provide a more compelling and convincing behind-the-scenes story.

You may have posted, liked or shared offensive content on your social accounts intentionally or unintentionally, and this can sometimes be the deal-breaker in securing your dream job. No matter how good you look on paper, if the personality that comes through your Facebook or Twitter profiles tells a different story, there is a very good chance of your application being rejected.

Your potential employers can learn a lot more about you through a simple search within social networks – far more than what they can learn through your job application or your CV. This is increasingly becoming the norm among recruiters when looking for the right talent.

So What Steps Can You Take?

So here are a few simple strategies you can use to give yourself an online makeover and appear more professional:

  • Maintain an updated LinkedIn profile that lists your entire work experience. Request your colleagues and peers to recommend you on LinkedIn to increase your credibility.
  • Do not hide yourself entirely on Facebook as this can only make you seem more suspicious in the eyes of your potential recruiter.
  • Clean up your social media accounts and remove / restrict access to any offensive content that appears on your profiles from the last 2-3 years. You can also use automated services that accurately detect problematic images and text effectively and in lesser time.
  • Share content like news related to your industry and participate in discussions that will improve the impression you make on strangers or first time visitors to your social profiles.
  • Follow relevant companies and professionals on social networks.


Learn more about Social Hire

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