According to a recent piece by The Undercover Recruiter, approximately 93% of recruiters will search for a candidate on social media at some point during the selection process, with up to 44% of recruiters having hired through social media.
There are two main questions that hiring managers are trying to find the answers to when they search for you online; whether or not you will be a suitable fit with their corporate culture, and to learn more about your qualifications.
The first and most obvious place to look for answers to these questions is, of course, LinkedIn – a network designed solely for networking, job-seeking and other professional activity. However, the focused nature of LinkedIn can mean that prospective employers don’t quite get the fully rounded picture of a person they would like. That’s not to say you shouldn’t invest time and energy in your LinkedIn profile writing: your previous work experience and education will help fill in some of the gaps for employers.
But they’re interested in finding out about you personally, too. And that is where Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest come in.
Clean up your Facebook and Twitter:
The constantly changing privacy settings on Facebook can often make us unsure as to exactly who can see what when it comes to our personal profiles. According to Victoria McLean, Director of CV, “the best assumption to make is that everyone can see everything”, and therefore, avoid posting any potentially embarrassing content, such as drunk photos or poorly spelled rants about politics or religion. Ensure that your profile and cover photos are suitably professional, and be sure to connect with groups and pages that are relevant to your target sector.
The same is applicable to your Twitter feed; avoid getting bogged down in troll-like threads and make sure that the content you’re putting out there is thoughtful, engaging, and above all, relevant to your interests. Follow companies, groups and experts in your chosen field, and get involved in conversations where you feel you can offer a helpful perspective.
If you’re on Pinterest or Instagram:
Pinterest and Instagram are both visually focused networks, which provide you with the opportunity to offer prospective employers an exciting and engaging glimpse into who you really are. This is especially handy if you are in the creative industries; you can pin images of your credentials and previous projects and successes in a “pin-board CV”. You can also curate visual content relating to your sector, showing that you are passionate and up to date with the industry.