Sharing these 6 things on social media will damage your job search. Clean up your online presence today!
What you say on social media channels is public.
I remember hearing someone say once
If you wouldn’t feel comfortable seeing something in the headlines of the New York Times, then you probably shouldn’t say it on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter or any social media channel.
And yet, I see these mistakes on social media every day! So why do people still do it?
Here’s The Problem
Did you know that employers scour social networks? They can and will use what they find to weed you out! Why take the chance they’ll find bad digital dirt?
According to CareerBuilder’s Recruiting Survey:
- 70% of employers use social networks to evaluate candidates
- 66% use search engines to search for candidates
What are employers looking for?
Social profiles give recruiters more confidence in a candidate’s
professional and cultural fit. On LinkedIn they look at:
- Professional experience
- Length of professional tenure
- Specific hard skills
Across Twitter, Facebook, and blogs they look for:
- Cultural fit
- Industry-related posts
- Professional experience
Just to be safe, avoid:
Politics and religion have always been considered risky topics in conversation, though they may not negatively impact an employer’s perception of you they are viewed and considered “neutral.”
You Wouldn’t Do These Things In Public or At Work
Think about the stuff you share online. Would you say those things at work? Would you share those photos with your co-workers or boss? Would you tell that joke to your grandmother?
When the employer is scoping out candidates, part of what they seem to be assessing is your fit in the organization.
If they assume that what you post is of interest to you and your friends, but it wouldn’t fly at their place of work, you’re out. Don’t give them an opportunity to weed you out by posting things that will damage your job search.
Your judgment is also in question. How responsible are you if you are sharing this kind of stuff online? Do they want to take a chance that you may have poor judgment in the workplace as well?
What are the 6 things employers deem as “negative” as they assess candidates online? Avoid these things that will damage your job search:
- Just say no to drugs.
Referencing illegal drugs is the most damaging thing you can do to your job search. Recruiters say seeing mentions of illegal drugs in a candidate’s social updates left a negative impression. Stay away from any mention of drugs, even if you’re joking, or run the risk of ruining your reputation.
2. Sex sells, but not in a job search.
Next in line for topics to avoid are tweets or posts of a sexual nature. While it may be funny to your friends, that joking status update or tweet is most likely offensive to others and damaging. You wouldn’t dare send that joke, photo or link in an email to your boss, so keep it out of your social networking stream.
3. Don’t drink and share.
We all know that drinking and driving don’t mix. The same holds true for sharing photos or status updates about that great party or overindulging Saturday night bash and your job search. These types of updates may not be as harmful as the others mentioned, however, you still want to keep your stream alcohol-free.
4. Swear at your own peril.
Employers have little tolerance for the use of profanity online. Recruiters viewed status updates containing profanity negatively, putting it in the top three things not to do. Profanity is unprofessional, offensive and wouldn’t be tolerated in most workplaces. As old fashioned as this may sound, keep your language clean.
5. Spelling and grammar counts.
You may think your status update doesn’t need to be typo-free, but spelling and grammar do matter. A quick scan of error-ridden updates either shows a lack of attention to detail or poor writing skills. In fact, one study notes: “More recruiters react negatively to profanity and grammar and punctuation errors in posts/tweets than references to alcohol use.”
6. Guns aren’t good either.
People’s attitudes about gun ownership and usage vary widely. Where someone lives and whether he or she is rural or urban may also impact how they perceive guns. You should know that most hiring entities negatively view references to guns, so conceal those weapons.
Previously posted on US News & World Report.
Hannah Morgan speaks and writes about job search and career strategies. She founded CareerSherpa.net to educate professionals on how to maneuver through today’s job search process. Hannah was nominated as a LinkedIn Top Voice in Job Search and Careers and is a regular contributor to US News & World Report. She has been quoted by media outlets, including Forbes, USA Today, Money Magazine, Huffington Post, as well as many other publications. She is also author of The Infographic Resume and co-author of Social Networking for Business Success.