Just take a moment to think about your last update on social media – was it on Facebook? A Tweet? Maybe you got tagged in photos from your last night out, or perhaps you wrote a blog post on your latest adventure?
Either way, at some point you’ve probably posted something online somewhere to say in one way or another ‘Hello Internet – I am here’.
The problem is, a lot of us do not realise how open and vast the internet is. It is very possible that from the other side of the world, someone can type in your name and find you, they can possibly find where you live, what your interests are, who your friends are and can choose to follow your every move online.
This is also true for potential Employers. Could your social media be negatively affecting your success in your job search?
Unless you are particularly careful about your privacy settings, it is very possible to be able to view almost everything on your profile. While the question of whether checking a potential employee on social media remains a controversial subject, it is an important area to consider if you are looking for work.
In order to keep yourself in check, BCR bring you these seven steps to give your online presence a spring clean:
1.) Start with searching your name and location in a search engine: What appears?
Is there anything here that draws your immediate attention that could be perceived as negative?
It’s highly likely google will be an Employer’s first stop. If a headline comes up with ‘Student Arrested for Drunk and Dis-orderly’ it’s most likely this won’t get ignored! Though some may be forgiving, others may not.
Although, if a search results in ‘Student Praised for Charity Work’ it might work in your favour!
See what appears and react accordingly. If there is something you’re concerned about, this may be something you bring up with your Recruiter as it prevents any surprises in the future. It’s better to be honest with us!
2.) Do the same for your social media profiles – what can you see when you aren’t logged in?
If you aren’t happy with what’s publicly available, change your security settings so that your personal information and photos are hidden.
3.) What social accounts do you use the most?
As SEO goes, your accounts are more likely to appear in search engines if they are updated frequently. In particular if these are deeply personal, you may need to play with your privacy/search settings to change how easily it appears in search engines.
Alternatively, you may of lost track of some in the past which might hold information that is out of date.
4.) What kind of content are you posting?
In a perfect world, we’d be able to post our opinions without any worry of judgement or ridicule from strangers but that simply isn’t the case. Though you may be passionate about your political opinion or maybe a certain class or movement, your potential new Boss might not be.
Though this may be something you deeply care about, be mindful when you are in the job market or at least prepare your privacy settings to hide those particular updates.
No one is asking you to change your opinion but if you think your views could be controversial, potentially keeping these at bay while pursuing an opportunity may be a good idea.
5.) How’s your spelling and grammar?
If we wrote our article ‘lyke dis in txt spk’ you’d probably exit our website as quickly as your mouse could move – that goes the exact same for Employers! Keep your spelling and grammar in check, especially when writing about yourself.
6.) Are your accounts up to date?
When was the last time you looked at Linked In? Was it before you started at your current place? Was it when you were a student?
Linked In is increasingly becoming a popular platform for Employers to acquire talent. Make sure your information is up to date and illustrates the kind of opportunities you want – also ensure your photo is appropriate!
7.) Are you following your potential new employer?
If you can keep up with the latest music news or local sales, you can mosey over to your potential new Employer’s company page and take a look. Any latest news might come in handy when you attend an interview, it shows you are proactive and genuinely interested in their work. Though steer clear of any personal pages you might fall upon – there is a difference between following and stalking!
Follow these steps and make any changes you think would be suitable. Although you may feel your updates are quite subdued, it’s a ‘no harm, no foul’ situation.
Simply think from the Employer’s point of view and if you’d be happy to explain what was on your social media in an interview – if the answer is no, be prepared to make some changes to your public pages!
Note: Our Consultants are happy to advise on any subjects that might appear negatively toward an Employer, if you feel there is something worth mentioning – do so when you meet with a Consultant.