Are you engaged in the social side of job searching? We don’t mean networking events and knocking on businesses doors, though that’s important! We are referring to your social media networks.
Now more then ever, social media is playing a huge part in the recruitment process, and employers are looking to social media to get a sense of a candidate’s experience and whether they’d be a fit for the company. Stats from CareerBuilder show that ‘60% of employers use social media to research candidates’ and ‘49% percent of hiring managers have found information that caused them not to hire a candidate.’
Though we certainly don’t advocate making hiring decisions solely based on social media profiles, your online reputation is more important then ever. Ensuring you present a professional image both in person and online are equally important.
The digital age of job search and finding your next career is continuously changing – so where and how can you put your best foot forward online and secure your new dream gig? Here are a few easy ways to stand out from the crowd in the world of social media.
Focus your attention. Know where hiring managers and recruiters are looking. Depending on your industry, where employers spend time looking may vary, so assess the positions you are applying for and consider where an employer might go for more information. A safe bet? Generally, employers will look to LinkedIn and Facebook first, but representing yourself professionally across the board is key.
Take the extra initiative. Search for the company you are applying for on all social platforms: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn Business Pages and FOLLOW them. Review your connections on LinkedIn and CONNECT with a personalized note, avoiding the generic “I want to connect” message. Do you have mutual connections? Leverage those.
Do your research. Social media can be a valuable tool, giving you insight into a company’s culture and can help prepare you for an interview. Take some time to poke around the organization’s social media platforms. If you have something meaningful to include in the online conversation – go ahead and comment or like their posts.
- Share a link to your LinkedIn profile on your resume, cover letter and email signature.
- Keep your LinkedIn updated with the details and description of your most recent experience, as an extension of your resume.
- Tailor your LinkedIn profile to your dream job.
- Endorse others and ask for recommendations on LinkedIn.
- Spell and grammar check! Just like you would with a resume, have someone else proof read your social media channels where possible.
- Highlight your accomplishments, qualifications, volunteer experience and community involvement.
- Write and post blogs on topics related to your industry.
- Encourage discussion on topics by posting questions to your network or sharing articles.
- Participate in meaningful discussions with good communication skills and relevant input.
- Showcase your personality.
- Untag and remove any content on social media that misrepresents you or may be misinterpreted by a potential employer.
Things to Avoid:
- Public profiles with inappropriate content. Check your security setting and see what others see.
- Posting negative comments about companies, or bad mouthing previous employers on social networks.
- Posting provocative or inappropriate photos; including drinking.
- Posting discriminatory or prejudiced comments about any area protected in the Human Rights Code.
- Contradicting yourself or lying about your qualifications.
- Posting anything you wouldn’t want to be displayed on a big screen or for your grandparent to see.
The benefits of a professional social network are endless. You can make connections with future employers, stay top of mind to recruiters, build a professional image, get noticed and allow an employer to see a glimpse of who you are beyond the bullet points on your application.
Your Engaged HR Job Seeker Assignment: Looking for a new job? Try implementing some of these tips into your social networks and reap the benefits when applying for your next position.