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There are many reasons to prepare your Facebook profile for job search. It is just one more opportunity to share the best professional information and create the right online reputation.
Is your Facebook profile job search ready?
Even if you don’t intend to use Facebook’s job board, many recruiters use Facebook to find and research candidates. This post will help you build a better profile that is more likely to show up in search results.
If you are serious about leveraging Facebook for your job search, you can get pointers on how to promote yourself (without feeling slimy) by reading Facebook May Be Your Ticket To A New Job there are also some secrets you can use to search for people on Facebook.
Where To Find Jobs On Facebook
Technically, companies have been posting jobs on Facebook for awhile, either as targeted ads or on their careers page. And now there is a Facebook job board: https://www.facebook.com/jobs
Based on an article on Recruiting Headlines (by my friend Chris Russell), there are some things you need to understand about how this new functionality works.
- The only way to apply to these types of jobs is through Facebook.
- Facebook pre-populates the application form with information from your About profile.
- You will have to enter all your employment history in your profile
- Your application will pop up in the company’s Messenger chat box and it is up to them to respond to you.
From here, each person reviewing applications will look at/evaluate different parts of your profile. You will want to make sure your profile is job search ready.
What Do Employers See
Your Public Facebook profile is view-able to anyone and you can control most of this information. (Scroll down to the bottom of this article to learn how you can see your public profile.)
When you apply for a job using Facebook, the information in your “About” section is visible to the employer. Here’s what you want them to see:
Begin Preparing Your Facebook Profile For Job Search
This pulls information from various parts of your profile (which you can edit and change who can view).
Work and Education
Complete this the same way you completed your LinkedIn profile. List jobs and education the same way you’ve listed them on LinkedIn. Remember the importance of consistency and keywords.
Places you’ve lived
There are advantages and disadvantages to allowing this to be public. For example, if you are relocating to a new city, including where you live could potentially eliminate you if the company wants to hire someone local.
Contact and Basic Info
Here you can add your phone number, email address, websites and social media outlets, birth date, languages, religious and political views. AND you can set who can view this information. I recommend setting your websites and social media profile links to public so anyone can see them (especially LinkedIn). But make sure you only list accounts you want a potential employer to look at. Be extra careful in specifying your religious and political views. Even this could potentially cause employers to shy away from certain candidates.
Family and Relationships
You can use this section, but since none of it relates to your job search, I would recommend setting your relationship so that only you can see it.
Details About You
There is another opportunity to write a bio or provide your pitch in the first section, About. Name pronunciation and other names (such as a maiden name) can make it easier for people you used to know to find you. Favorite quote is another field you can use to show your personality. Pick a quote that fits well with your career goals and style.
There are many options for life events (see below). Focus on adding information to your Work & Education. You can list new jobs, published books or papers, volunteer work or add your own, such as certifications or professional development classes. The other section you may want to pay attention to is the Travel & Experiences. This allows you to add a new hobby, achievement or award, new language or travel. As you determine what sections to fill in and who can see it, always use the filter of how your future employer may perceive the information.
Get The Most From Your Facebook Profile
As mentioned before and I wrote about here, employers are searching Facebook for potential candidates. They can search by many different fields (as can you). Using the right keywords and terminology can help your profile show up in search results. When someone does find your profile, you want to make sure you’ve highlighted the necessary professional information. When someone lands on your profile, this is what they can see (and you should test your own profile to see what information is view-able).
Use Your Intro Section Wisely
This is an important personal branding opportunity. When someone views your profile, they will see whatever you have put in your Intro (it used to be called Bio) Facebook tells you how to edit this section here.
If you are actively and publicly job searching, use your Intro section! In your intro, include your personal branding statement, Value Proposition, Pitch or a list of skills. DO NOT state you are “actively seeking new job” or “in transition”. That sounds desperate. You only have 100 characters, so use them wisely.
Feature 5 Photos
On your profile page you can select 5 photos you want to feature. You can upload or select ones from your Facebook feed. Use photos that show you in a professional way, such as attending a career-related event, volunteering, winning an award or doing something you would gladly discuss during an interview.
Review All Public Posts and Know Your Privacy Settings
Now is a great time to learn how to adjust your settings and monitor your account more closely.
Any status update you share and set as public will show up on your public profile as well as comments you post to Facebook pages and public groups.
Other sections of your profile that are public include your
- profile picture
- cover photo
- workplaces you’ve listed
To learn more about using cover photos check out, Cover Photos That Capture Your Personal Brand
And to get ideas on what types of images and status updates to use on Facebook, read this: Facebook May Be Your Ticket to a New Job
Go right now and see what your public profile looks like when someone you don’t know views it. This only works from the desktop version of Facebook (not your phone).
How To View Your Public Profile
Go to your Facebook profile and look for the three dots near your cover photo and select the “View As” option under “Who can see my stuff?” This allows you to select “Public” view to see how your profile is viewed by someone you don’t know.
How To Change Your Privacy Settings
If you decide you do not want to share certain parts of your profile, go to the lock symbol at the top of your screen and select “Privacy Checkup” and Facebook will walk you through the various section settings.
Learn How To Use Lists
If you want to share certain posts with friends, and not publicly, you can use lists to determine who sees which posts you publish.
When you add a status update, you can select who you want to see, or not see, your update. This is a bit like an email distribution list.
You may set up a list for family and another for friends. Facebook sets up several lists for you already.
“Close Friends” are friends you’re more likely to share personal information with;
“Acquaintances” are people you know less well and when you want to exclude certain people from seeing your more personal posts, you can choose
“Friends except Acquaintances” in the audience selector;
and for people whom you don’t want to see your regular status updates, you can create criteria under “Custom“.
There’s always more to learn. But the bottom line is, you want to put the best version of you out there and create the right first impression.