When you’re job searching, you likely put your best efforts into presenting yourself in a professional manner in your resume and other application materials. However, hiring managers often want to view a more in-depth impression of you, and may turn to your social media accounts to get a sense of what type of person/employee you are and whether or not it aligns with the organization. Since hiring managers are looking at your social media accounts, follow these steps to clean them up:
Don’t just assume that because you’re conservative about what you post on social media that nothing embarrassing (or worse!) will show up if a hiring manager looks you up. Instead, get a preview of what hiring managers are likely to see by first performing a basic search of your name on social media and search engines. There may be old blogs, comments, posts, or photos you’ve totally forgotten about that you wouldn’t want hiring managers to see.
Lock Down Your Privacy
After you have searched yourself and learned what exactly is accessible to public viewing, take control of it. Verify and update your privacy account settings if needed for your more personal accounts. Avoid going overboard though – consider keeping some details, such as education and work history, visible on your accounts. This way, when hiring managers find you online, the information matches what you’ve told them and makes you seem trustworthy.
Get Rid of Inappropriate Posts
Carefully review the content on your social media accounts to look for anything inappropriate or that you feel simply does not portray you in the way you desire to hiring managers. Delete or change the visibility settings to “private” any posts containing profanity, partying, combative comments, etc. Basically, if you would be embarrassed to show it directly to a hiring manager, get rid of it.
Highlight Professional Skills
Hiring managers aren’t trying to use your social media accounts to find reasons to not hire you – they want to see if you’re as good as you seem to be on paper and/or in person. So use your social media to show that is indeed the case and you are a top candidate. Include content on your social media that highlights your professional skills, such as sharing something you created or a link about you winning an award, for example.
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