Always be mindful about what you post on social media – a seemingly innocent comment may be misconstrued and scupper your chance of landing a great job. What you post on social media can be the deciding factor between being chosen for your dream position or having your application sent to the recycling bin.
We’ve all heard of the Penny Sparrows of the world – those thoughtless individuals whose bigoted social media comments have landed them in a world of a trouble. But there’s another picture – that seemingly innocent Facebook post complaining about work on a Monday morning could have serious repercussions if the wrong person sees it. It could be so serious, in fact, that it leaves your career – and even your reputation – in tatters.
When it comes to social media, you probably know the obvious things to steer clear of: posting racist or defamatory comments, naked pictures, pornography and the like. You probably also know to beware of stalkers, scamsters and trolls. But as important is to remember that one throwaway comment intended for your closest friends or family could easily get out, and the negative consequences can be endless.
Screening potential employees A recent Forbes article by Jacquelyn Smith focused on how employers are increasingly searching for candidates they have interviewed on social media – and what they find influences how likely they are to employ that person. So, while you may think that what you get up to in your private time is nobody’s business but your own, bear in mind that once you post that photo or comment, it is in the social domain forever, and can be accessed by practically anyone. According to research undertaken by global human capital company CareerBuilder, 37% of employers use social media platforms to screen potential employees. And because we’re all human and therefore subjective, it means your potential boss could be using the content you post on Facebook or Instagram to make a decision about whether or not to employ you.
The research also shows that many of these employers admit to making their final decision based on what they find out about candidates on social media platforms. It appears that employers use social media searches to find out whether or not a potential candidate can conduct themselves in an appropriate manner. So the best advice we can give you you is “this one liner: Before you post, think!