by Thomas Moran, CEO of Addison Group
Looking for a job in today’s economy is no easy task. Our reliance on smartphones and social media can complicate the search. In fact, a recent study found that 1 in 10 young people have lost a job opportunity due to their social media pages.
From Facebook to Twitter to Instagram, people feel comfortable sharing everything about their lives on the Internet. However, it’s important to remember that your friends aren’t the only ones reading your posts. Potential employers are too… and they can be turned off by several factors that you might not even consider.
Here are top five dos and don’ts when it comes to job seekers and social media:
1. Do make sure your qualifications are front and center.
Make sure that social media pages reflect more than just a love of Breaking Bad. Applicants should also make education and qualifications front and center, as well as any volunteer work and relevant passions.
2. Don’t follow in Kim Kardashian’s footsteps.
Forget the sexy bikini shots and pictures lounging on the beach. Instead, post pictures from a recent Habitat for Humanity trip, showcase graphic art skills or a love for writing by including a portfolio of recent work and a link to published articles.
3. Avoid hot-button topics.
Whether it’s Trayvon Martin or Paula Deen, avoid divisive subject matter. Even if the applicant isn’t the one making ignorant statements, their friends’ lack of tact could reflect poorly on the job hunter. And, make sure not to post about job interviews or possible places that are close to finalizing the hiring process. It’s in bad taste and will frighten off potential employers.
4. Don’t act desperate.
This is true when it comes to dating and when it comes to job hunting. If statuses are in poor taste, like “Anyone want to give me a job? I’m up for anyyyyything” or “I’m so broke, Visa isn’t getting paid this month,” it is going to appear unprofessional and unreliable. Instead, applicants should post positive and upbeat statues about all the interesting and rewarding things that occur in free time.
5. Don’t post a million times a day.
Even if the reality is staying at home in pajamas with nothing to do but tweet, the world does not need to know that. Constantly being online gives the impression of someone who is a couch potato who has nothing else going on. Instead, log off Facebook, get out there and pad resumes with internships and volunteer work.
Thomas Moran is the CEO of Chicago-based staffing firm Addison Group. Addison combines a national network and localized service for broad reach with a personal touch. Specialized practices deliver the right candidate at the right time in Administration, Engineering, Finance & Accounting, Financial Services, Healthcare, and Information Technology.