Your resume and cover letter will get you in the door for an interview, but your social media can either seal the deal or break it. Here are three ways to clean up your online presence for a job search.
Go back in time.
Your social media will be looked over at some point in the interview process, so you want to be sure that there’s isn’t anything on there that could be considered offensive or paint you in a negative light. To make sure that there’s nothing on your accounts that could harm your chances of getting a job, you need to go back through all of your posts. You want your social media to showcase you are now, not who you used to be.
While a hiring manager shouldn’t take into account what you do in your free time, they most likely will. Photos from parties are fun, but make sure they don’t depict anything wild or out of control. Be sure that everything you post is suitable for work. When in doubt, delete the picture or the tweet. When it comes to Twitter, remember that everything you like and share is public too. Set your accounts to private if you really don’t want to take any pictures down, but be aware that if all of your social accounts are private, this could be a red flag to the hiring manager.
Don’t forget the comments.
It’s not just your old posts that need to be gone through – it’s the comments too. Delete anything not suitable for work or even borderline offensive. To ensure all future comments are work-safe, let your friends know you’re in the process of job searching and that they can text you their comments instead.
Googling yourself is a great way to catch things that you might have forgotten about or not even realized were out there. You never know what a Google search might turn up, like your middle school YouTube account or an old WordPress blog. It’s also a fascinating way to see how you show up online.
Make sure your LinkedIn is updated.
Make sure that your LinkedIn profile is up to date, including a recent professional photo and current job information. Treat your profile as if it’s an expanded version of your resume. Make use of all of the profile sections such as skills and endorsements, the about section, and accomplishments.
You should also be actively using LinkedIn to share content, comment on posts, and write your own articles. All of these things will look good to recruiters and hiring managers, as it shows you’re engaged in learning and you’re staying on top of current trends and news in your industry.
Remember, your social media presence has the possibility to help or hinder your chances of getting a job. By taking the time to go through your accounts and clean things up, you’re ensuring that it will help.
Ashira Prossack is an Internationally recognized career and leadership coach, speaker, and trainer helping people go from surviving at work to thriving at work. She works