Yesterday I re-tweeted (shared) an article from Mashable called "Do You Pass the Social Media Test". Every job seeker must read this. It explains, from a recruiter's viewpoint, how they evaluate candidates (beyond the resume).
There have been other studies and research that shows well over 50% of recruiters and HR professionals are using social media to evaluate and even source candidates. While this may not be true in all industries and all occupations, it is certainly something to watch and like playing the lottery, "hey, you never know".
What this article so nicely points out is the logic behind WHY recruiters are looking at more than your resume. In short, recruiters can find hundreds of equally talented candidates now. LinkedIn has made that very easy for them. The large numbers of available talent knocking on their doors also helps. The recruiters need a way to identify the right fit for the jobs they are filling and it goes much farther than just having the skills to do the job. They are looking for "fit" in the big scope of things.
Here are ways the writer/recruiter looks at LinkedIn to select or de-select candidates:
"1. Has genuine recommendations from peers, managers and colleagues
2. Has the more complete profile
3. Is a member of more groups pertaining to their respective field
4. Has a picture
5. Lists interests, hobbies and other information related to their life
outside of work
6. Participates and highlights their involvement in non-paid projects
related to their field (open-source, community, volunteer, conference)
7. Updates their status more often
8. Asks and answers more questions
9. Links to their employer, blog and other projects of interest
10. Has the larger network"
Just imagine you decided you didn't need LinkedIn or only had a couple of connections. This recruiter would not have chosen your resume as the one to call in. Simple, huh?
What this means is that your message across LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter needs to be consistent and professional.
Your content should not be extremist or beyond PG-13.
You can't "not play" in 2009.
Some people are saying that Twitter is a fad. We don't know for sure. People didn't really think very much of LinkedIn in the early days either. Don't invest too much time or energy in any one area.
Social media is an interesting blend of networking, marketing, information sharing and technology. Have fun and experiment.
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.