Are Employers Really Looking at Your Social Media Before They Hire You?
Published: Oct 10, 2017 By Roger Lear
I get asked this question all the time. The short answer is yes. There are numerous surveys (Challenger Gray, SHRM) that certainly make the case 60-90% of employers at least peek at you social media. But what effect does this really have on you getting hired? When you think about it, most of the people checking your social media out have their own personal social media. So, what exactly are they looking for?
Challenger Gray’s survey asked recruiters if they looked at social media platforms when vetting a candidate. An overwhelming percentage did with the top three being LinkedIn (96%), Facebook (40%) and Twitter (14%). There is a difference between a recruiter and a human resource professional. Recruiters (either an internal company recruiter or a third-party recruiter...aka headhunter) review resumes and search the internet for potential candidates. When they get someone that may fit their job requisition, they WILL check your social without thinking twice. An employer without an internal recruiting department doesn’t have the time to check your social media. They look at your resume and then set interviews based on this. Once you get an interview with the hiring authority, that is where they may have some time to look at your social profiles. But even here, I would tell you that in many companies, hiring authorities are busy and many just don’t have time to check out your Facebook. I may look at your LinkedIn, but to most, that is just your online resume with a picture.
“Yes, employers check your social media and that is a good thing!”
If you are a candidate for a job you really want, you hope they check your social media! You have the opportunity during a job search to not only show your job qualifications via your resume but you the person comes to life with your social. If a hiring manager or recruiter is looking, they are interested in you! Your only job is to make sure your social is normal. Anyone looking at your social has their own social as well so they get it. This graphic shows what you shouldn’t have in your social posts (and you shouldn’t be surprised that you don’t get an interview).
Source: Challenger Gray Survey 2017
Pretty straight forward. Job seekers today have such an advantage because you can make your social presence professional and fun. Pictures tell the story quickly so have a nice profile picture and cover photo on all your different social accounts. You may want to take this one down during the job search.
Remember, if you are in the middle of a job search, recruiters and headhunters everyday are sourcing with Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn. The more keywords you have in your profile page to what you do (driver, accountant, nurse, graphic design, etc.), you have even a better chance of being found by great companies looking for you! During a job search, use your social media to make your resume come alive. You have more power today as a job seeker than any time in history!