Clean up your Social Media NOW!
Before you send out that killer C.V. you’ve been working on for the last few weeks, stop and take a long, hard look at how the rest of the world sees you.
The problem of social media posts ‘haunting’ people is not just restricted to public figures, research from Microsoft show that 70% of recruiters have turned potential employees down, due to controversial material that has shown up in web searches.
Your first interview with 35% of recruiters is on Social Media sites, where they review your ’About’, ‘Interests’ and ‘Activities’
More than half of adults surveyed would remove everything they had ever posted online about themselves if they could. Thankfully, ‘pruning’ your online reputation is a lot easier than many people imagine – a few basic steps can ‘police’ your profile on sites such as Twitter and Facebook, simply by adjusting privacy settings, removing tags, and deleting unwanted images & posts.
How to Clean Up
We all know by now that those Facebook pictures of that wild, drunken party should be taken down, along with that shot of you in a swimsuit with the humorously-placed balloon. But what about the less obvious employer turn-offs?
Managing friends lists can also be a good way to control what is posted online – so that, for instance, you can control who mentions you, or tags you in posts and images.
“Regularly evaluate the social networks and online services that you actively use. Cancel the ones you don’t. Regularly review the lists of people you’re connected to online. Keep your lists of friends, linked organisations and associations current and ensure you’re happy with your connections.”
Norton’s security experts recommend using image and blog search functions to ensure you stay on top of information posted about you and warns against posting any details about political or religious beliefs. Sections for religion or political leanings are part of profiles on many social sites including Facebook.
Norton also warns not to trust privacy settings on social networks – as these may change.
Create profiles on other social sites to ensure a ‘managed’ public profile. Create a Google Plus profile with information you want employers to see, as Google searches tend to rank its own social network highly; create a LinkedIn profile with job information. Filling both of these with information about your skills is a useful first step.
Your Profile picture should reflect how you want the world to see you.
If your interests & hobbies show a connection to your chosen career path, great; eliminate any conflicts
- Clean up posts & images on your newsfeed
- If in doubt, set your profile to ‘PRIVATE’ or ‘SUSPEND’ it temporarily until you’ve cleaned it up completely
- Do a Google Search on all forms of your name – either modify or delete anything that reflects negatively.
Apply the above rules to social media updates into the future to ensure a pleasing profile to any future prospective employer.