You can carefully craft a résumé, cover letter and prepare for an interview but at the end of the day it’s what you post in your spare time that may have the biggest effect on whether you land the job you’re applying for.
A recent career builder survey showed that 70-percent of would-be employers are now scouring social media to learn more about clients. What are they looking for? Drug use, inappropriate comments, or possibly illegal activity according to Consumer Reports — and in some instances, if the law allows, would-be bosses are even asking for passwords to take a closer look. Short of that, they may perform a “shoulder test.”
“That is when the employer will have you open up your social media account and literally stand over your shoulder checking out your page,” said Consumer Reports journalist Donna Rosato.
“I’m not comfortable with that,” said Jeanette Torres, who is currently in the job hunting process.
While she may not like that, it doesn’t mean it won’t happen — which is why it’s smart to go through social media profiles with a fine-tooth comb. You can delete posts that you believe portray you poorly. On sites like Facebook you can’t remove photos of you posted by other people, but you can untag them so it’s next to impossible to find.
Rosato noted that you don’t have to stop at that, in fact, she recommends you use the social media snooping that most businesses perform to your advantage.
“For example, maybe you do a lot of volunteer work — showcase that!”
Instead of just deleting photos, make sure items that put you in a good light are also front and center on sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram.