How social media may affect your job search

These days social media correlates highly with job search. Global social networking sites, such as Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, inevitably form a certain image of a person. Even though employers prefer candidates that can be found online, it doesn’t mean that they wish to encounter every little aspect of your life when they research the candidates. So, your profile and status updates can have both damaging and favourable outcomes in the process of looking for a job.

How can it negatively impact your image?

There are a couple of “red flags” that can cause the candidate’s application to be dismissed. One way or another, the first thing anyone would notice while checking your online profile out is some sort of inappropriate images, videos or written post. You can’t expect them to overlook the way you express yourself: employers might be unimpressed by poor language and bad communications skills. Nudity, alcohol or drugs appearing the photos you share won’t help you to receive a job offer either.

The content you post online might say a lot about your behaviour and personal characteristics. To avoid employers getting a bad impression, the candidate should not share false or confidential information, complain about their previous workplace or discriminate. Employers also don’t usually acknowledge the candidates who post very frequently: oversharing can be a sign of unreliability and indiscretion.

Can your social media profile help you in your job search?

On the other hand, your online persona might make the employer find reasons to actually hire you. It’s not like the employers are investigating your profile with a purpose of finding something to use against you. On the contrary, the content you post online can be a proof of your qualifications and your achievements – it can be used to make you stand out. There are lots of other things that may encourage employers to consider your application, like positive comments, interesting hobbies and overall professional image.

Moreover, being active on social media suggests that you keep up with the latest trends and have at least minimal computer skills required for the work. Though pages like Facebook or Twitter should probably be used for personal purposes and remain more private, it’s advisable to have a LinkedIn account that will allow you to create a more professional profile. Running a blog might also make an impression on employers: it suggests that you are a motivated self-starter that would be a great addition to the team. Are likely to receive a job offer

Nowadays, your future career depends not just on your curriculum vitae  and cover letter, but also on your online choices. Make sure you use social media consciously and carefully and don’t forget to manage your online profile before you begin looking for a job in South Africa 




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