Written by: Mike Smith | 17 Mar 2023

Social Media: Can it really affect my job search?

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In today’s digital age, social media has become an integral part of our lives. From sharing photos and connecting with friends to building our personal brand, social media offers a wide range of benefits. However, when it comes to job hunting, your social media presence can also impact your chances of getting hired.

So, do potential employers look at your social media? The answer is yes. A recent study found that 70% of employers use social media to screen candidates during the hiring process. This means that what you post online can have a significant impact on your job prospects.

But what do employers look at in a social media screen? The answer varies depending on the company and the job. However, some common things that employers look for include inappropriate behavior or content, negative comments about previous employers or colleagues, drug or alcohol use, poor communication skills, and lack of professionalism.

It is important to note that employers in the UK are legally allowed to view a candidate’s public social media profiles, but they cannot request access to private profiles or passwords. Therefore, it is crucial to be mindful of what you post on social media.

So, how can social media prevent you from getting a job? Your social media presence can impact your job prospects in several ways. Posting inappropriate or offensive content, displaying a negative attitude or poor judgment, showing poor communication skills or lack of professionalism, lying about your qualifications or experiences, and engaging in illegal activities can all prevent you from getting hired.

What do employers want to know about you? Employers use social media to learn more about a candidate’s personality, interests, and values. They want to see if a candidate is a good fit for their company culture and has the necessary skills for the job.

It is important to note that while it’s possible for employers to access deleted social media accounts, it is not very common. However, anything you post online can be permanent, even if you delete it later.

Employers do social media checks to get a better understanding of a candidate’s character and behavior. They want to make sure that the candidate they hire is a good fit for their company and will represent them well. In fact, 70% of employers use social media to screen candidates.

When looking for a job, it’s important to be mindful of what you post on social media. Some social media platforms that you should avoid include Twitter rants or offensive tweets, inappropriate photos or comments on Instagram, and unprofessional behavior on LinkedIn.

The danger of social media to your job is that it can negatively impact your career prospects. A poor social media presence can prevent you from getting hired, damage your reputation, and even get you fired from a current job. That said, not having any social media footprint can be slightly worrisome. It’s probably not going to rule you out of a job, but it could suggest some slight issues – perhaps a lack of social skills for example. If you are interviewing in the social media space, such as marketing, this can be the difference between a yes and a no. That said, no social media footprint is still substantially better than a negative social media footprint.

At Career Smart, we understand the importance of a strong social media presence in today’s job market. That’s why our 8-week course provides personalized career guidance, advice, and training for first-time job seekers. Our course is conducted via Zoom and provides detailed 1-to-1 career guidance to help you create a professional online presence that showcases your skills, accomplishments, and personality to potential employers. Why not book a free consultation with us today, to see how we can help?