Do Employers Check Social Media?
Do employers look at your social media?
With technology at everyone’s fingertips, potential employers are checking potential employees' social media. Social media is a depiction of you and your character which is why it is best to keep private things to yourself vs. posting it for everyone to see.
The big question that a lot of young adults needs to ask themselves is:
Would you want your grandma or potential employer to see this?
Posting on Social Media
What you post on your social media accounts is for everyone to see, not just your friends and family, but anyone that is looking at it has to access in one way or another. Posting on social media can have serious repercussions in your professional life. It could cost you your current job, but also all the future jobs that may come your way.
Depending on how large the company is you are applying for, there is a 70 percent chance that your employer is using a social media screening system during the hiring process. They are checking for your activity and what you are posting about. When you are hired and working at said company, about 40 percent of employers will continue to check your social media accounts.
When they are looking at your social media accounts, they are searching for an array of reasons that lead them to believe that you are a good candidate for the job. Simply put, employers are looking to see if you are a good representation and fit for their company.
Social Media Accounts that Employers Check
Before applying for a job, you should review your social media accounts. Anyone that is searching for a job should assume that employers will look at every social media account that is tied to your name.
Main platforms that employers are checking:
With the platforms listed above, they are looking more at your personal life. They aim to find “dirt” on what you do in your personal time. A lot of stuff that you post to these platforms can be very damaging to your chances of being hired.
Most employers will look at your LinkedIn because of how much information it has on you and all that you have accomplished. LinkedIn is viewed as a secondary resume and profile for a candidate.
NEVER Erase Profiles
The fear of having something embarrassing or negative being discovered can make it tempting to delete, but avoid doing so. This can backfire in many ways.
About 50 percent of employers will not call a person for an interview if they can not find them online. Part of that 50 percent is because that is how they can gather more information before reaching out to the candidate. Most employers expect people to have some kind of social media presence.
Employers look at this as you hiding something. It is not a good idea to delete your profile because it doesn’t guarantee the data is completely erased or gone. The best way to proceed with your profile is simply tidying up your accounts and keeping them clean.
Use Social Media to your Advantage
Employers are not looking on the internet for reasons not to hire candidates, they are looking for reasons to hire someone.
A Career Builder study was done and said, “58 percent of employers conduct social media screenings to look for information supporting a candidate's qualifications for the job — 50 percent want to ensure the candidate has a professional online persona, and 34 percent want to see what other people are posting about the candidate. Just 24 percent of those surveyed to check social media to search for reasons not to hire.”
When thinking about your accounts, consider keeping them private. It is legal for employers to look at and check public social media platforms. If a company asks for your personal information tied to your accounts, that’s a red flag — consider withdrawing your application. Social media is able to help you and display what kind of person you are outside of a work environment. It can impress your employers and show professionalism.
What to Avoid When Posting
When posting on social media, employers do not look at the negatives, but more or less their goal is to find something that leads them to not hiring someone.
Examples of why employers won’t hire someone:
- Provocative or inappropriate photography or videos
- Drinking or drug use
- Criminal behavior
- Unprofessional screen names
Think Before You Post
Not thinking before posting has major repercussions. It is up to the individual to display how they want to come off as and how you they want to be represented. Be the person you want your grandma to see you as. Also, when you are applying to jobs and employers are looking at your accounts, ask yourself — what will they be observing and what will they think?
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