Are you currently looking for a job? Your online personal image can make or break your job search. Potential employers are turning to Google and social media to screen candidates. As a job seeker, it is important to understand how companies are utilizing social media to perform pseudo-background checks on their candidates.
CareerBuilder conducted a survey in 2009 on how companies screened employees. The survey found that 45 percent of companies use social media to screen employees and 35 percent decided not to hire the job candidate because of what they found on social networking sites. Take these simple steps to ensure your online reputation positively showcases your character and skills.
Quick tips for managing your online reputation:
1. Google yourself. See which images, videos, articles and content appears in the search results. Try and remove any negative or inappropriate content you wouldn’t want an employer to see.
2. Review each of your social networking profiles (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+) to see what might be visible to a potential employer. Remove or restrict access to any information that might be deemed unprofessional.
3. Create a professional online presence. Position yourself as an expert in your field. Share content that a potential employer might find interesting.
4. Monitor your image. Set up Google Alerts that will notify you with an email each time your name appears in a Google search.
Online postings and social networking can be used to create a positive image and showcase your expertise. Consider posting your opinions or articles on social networking sites to show your knowledge of the industry you wish to enter.
Always be careful with what you post online. Remember, anything posted on the Internet is public and may be visible to future employers. In today’s market, having a professional image both online and offline is crucial. For additional assistance with your job search, visit Grantham University’s Career Resource Center.
Infographic Credit: Mind Flash