The dos and don’ts when it comes to social media in the job search

The emergence of social media has fundamentally changed the way we communicate around the world, and the way businesses recruit. More and more, HR executives and recruiters are turning to social networks to sniff out promising job candidates. In fact, 91 % of companies use social media for recruitment. Although the use of social media in the jobs search can be extremely helpful, it can also be very detrimental in finding a job. Here is some advice that is worth taking into account before you start to advertise yourself on the World Wide Web.

The first step is to clean up your facebook account. Facebook is the most popular social media site on the web. 200 million people joined in less than a year when it started up and if the facebook community was a country, it would be the 3rd largest in the world. With 11% of the world’s population on facebook, it is very common for recruiters and businesses to look up potential candidates for a job. In fact 47% of recruiters screen candidates after reading their résumé. If your facebook account has no privacy settings and is covered in photos of you out on the lash with your mates and inappropriate comments, recruitment companies will think twice before booking you in for an appointment. Anything you think that could be potentially offensive in anyway shape or form, you should get rid of it. Privacy settings are worth tweaking to make sure people who you are not friends with cannot browse your page.

Twitter is now widely regarded as the ultimate recruitment tool. It boasts 225 million users and 150 million tweets are posted every day. More and more people are using it for business and recruitment purposes. It is very important to sign up to recruitment agencies twitter accounts so that you receive up to date information with regards to job vacancies. It is also worth subscribing to the RSS feed on a twitter account. By subscribing to a websites RSS feed, you basically receive all the updated information and feedback from the company you have subscribed to. It’s a great way to keep up with vacancies within your industry; with feeds coming in straight from the recruitment agency. The key principles to follow on twitter are to follow individuals, reply to individuals, re-tweet and share. This will build your profile and increase your attractiveness.

LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional network with over 130 million members and growing rapidly. It is used by recruitment companies as a primary means to source candidates. It’s similar to facebook as it is simply a bank of profiles but is works very much on a business to business basis. The key to increasing your appearance is to fill out your profile to increase the amount of connections you have and to get recommendations. You ultimately want to increase your exposure but be sure to keep all personal information on your facebook profile!

The main message I am putting forward is that social media has now become a huge influence in the business world today. By being active on social media you enhance your exposure and ultimately increase the likelihood of you being scouted; but be sure to be clever about what you choose to share about yourself.

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