Social networks: are you damaging your career opportunities?

Since the boom of social networking in the early 2000’s we have been driven to consistently updating the world with our goings on, whether that’s where we’re going, what we’re doing or what we’re eating for dinner (because everyone needs to know that you are eating a really lovely pizza!). 

Although social networks are a great way to keep up to date with friends, people seem to forget that they’re also public sites… Without the correct privacy settings anyone can view what you’re writing, in this case that you are ‘loving this pizza #Tasty’.
The Recruitment Society and The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) say that most employers now search for their job candidates online.

Because of this, you have to be so careful with what you’re writing on your social networks, especially if you are job seeking. Blue Octopus advise all candidates to research a company before going for an interview, so what’s stopping the company from researching the interviewee? It works both ways.
Your potential employer probably won’t be impressed by pictures of you out on the town or your posts about ‘hating work today!’

Social networks now give recruiters an insider’s view of what the candidate is really like and if they don’t like what they see then it stands to reason that it will affect your chances of getting the job.
Daniel Briggs (Marketing Manager at Blue Octopus) had the following to say on social networks and personal profiles; “Candidates need to view their online social networks like a social CV for recruiters, they need to have personality but also be professional. I personally use Twitter and LinkedIn as my ‘professional’ networks and Facebook as my social venting place. I always make sure that my Facebook privacy settings are set so just my friends can see my pointless updates on a weekend”.

You also have to be aware of social networks when working for a company. There has been a number of incidents where employees have taken sick days and then posted comments and images of what they were really doing, for example ‘I’m loving having the day to do what I want!’ What do you think your boss will make of this? #Fired!
To help you avoid these social network nightmares and present yourself in the best possible light, we have put together a list of tips to consider;
• If you do not have a social network presence you might be at a disadvantage to other interviewees.
• Always check your privacy settings and limit your audience.
• Never insult your current or previous employers online, it might come back around and bite you.
• Do not post inappropriate photos/posts. Think to yourself before you post, ‘would my Grandma like to see this?’
• Monitor friends’ posts; make sure they aren’t portraying you in a bad light.

Views: 298

Comment by Marie-Clara Thaureux on February 5, 2013 at 8:18pm
A man after my own heart this article sounds familiar, lets hope between us we can reach all the 'potentials' out there.
Comment by Daniel Briggs on February 6, 2013 at 3:36am

How funny that we both have written articles on social media influence, it is quite a hot topic on the news at present. Lets hope job seekers are taking it in.


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