How to manage your e-reputation (and why you need to)

 

We live in an ever-increasing, inter-connected digital world: A world where information spreads like wildfire.

Everything you say and do online can be tracked.

And whether you like it or not, you have an e-reputation.

In previous posts I have talked a lot about the take-over of social media and the resulting death of privacy. For a job seeker, managing your reputation online is essential. Here are some stats which explain why:

  • 48% of recruiters check personal sites during the hiring decision
  • 63% of recruiters use social media to prospect employees
  • 78% of recruiters check search engines to find out more about potential candidates

(Stats from KBSD)

But it’s not just people looking for a job who need to manage their e-reputation. 8% of employers admit to having fired someone because of their actions on social media. So I’m afraid it’s just a fact: No matter who you are or where you might be, you have to manage your online reputation.

Now that has put e-reputation in quite a dark light and suggested that you only manage your reputation to avoid problems. But this is not the case. The benefits of managing your online reputation can quite literally change your life.  For example it can get you a job, bring you business in your existing job or even get you a promotion. But how do you go about improving and maintaining a positive online reputation?

Well honestly that completely depends on how you use the internet. But here are 3 key things you can do:

#1: Create your own online presence

A lot of people like to believe that if people can’t find you online then they can’t discriminate against you. Unfortunately that’s not the case. Most employers would develop a negative opinion of you if you have no online presence what so ever. In a digital world where technology rules, being able to use it and understand it is a valuable asset. Therefore an employer will assume you cannot do so if they can’t find you. So, get yourself online and create your own e-reputation.

#2: Find yourself

Most internet users begin their online activity with a search. The chances are, if someone wants to find you they are going to Google you. So why not Google yourself, check where you appear on SERPs and what information comes up. By doing this you can track and manage everything that is being said about you.

#3: Secure everything

In most cases you control what you put on the web. Make sure the privacy settings on your social networks are tight and do not reveal personal information. Ensure only to use a secure browser to avoid hackers posting incorrect and harmful information. Take a look at what you’ve got online – don’t share inappropriate pictures, comments etc in a professional context, it usually doesn’t end well.

So that’s just a few things to get you started. Just remember; you need to keep on top of what is being said about you, protect your e-reputation and ultimately boost your online presence.

Someone’s always watching, so make sure they see what you want them to see.

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