While I was doing my research on this topic, I saw this statistics on The Jobvite 2014 named ‘Social Recruiting Survey’. It shows the increasing trend of employers searching for potential candidates using social media. To keep up with the competition, we must learn how to build our own online profile professionally and effectively.
Below listed are the 3 points which I personally feel are baby steps in managing a professional online profile.
1. How are you going to marketing yourself?
‘To make yourself more visible, think about how you present and express skills and experience on a LinkedIn profile just as carefully as you would with a paper CV.’ (Graham Snowdon, 2011) This is very important as one should not entirely ignore how powerful online recruitment is nowadays, given the fact that the world is so digitally involved. Depends on what career aspects you are looking for or majoring in, you should project that side of you online. And by that, it involves the style of writing and how do you organised your profile. For example, if you’re looking for a creative managerial role, your style of writing should be slightly interesting yet keeping it formal enough for an online resume. If you wouldn’t mind sharing your other social media to allow employers to further understand you, you can include the links on your LinkedIn profile too.
Plus point when you proofread your online profile and make no mistake. Employer sees that as being careful with your work and keeping it organised.
2. Always use a professional looking photo
A photo taken at your friend’s party with drinks or posing in a bikini isn’t what employers are looking for. Like any CV, to use a professional looking photo is strongly recommended. Some people don’t upload their photo on their profile but employers want to know how the individuals look like. On top of that, the chances of employer clicking on your profile would be higher as compared to other profiles without any profile photo or photos that are not taken professionally. It also shows how organised and credible that individual is, whether he/she look neat in the photo and without photo, he/she may come across as being inactive online or plain outdated. ‘Luci Baldwin, IPC Media resourcing and recruitment manager, says anything constructive and positive will work in a candidate’s favour.’ (Cary Cooper, 2011)
3. Don’t lie
The last point can either get you a job or to lose it. Many employers goes to the Internet and Google the candidates name immediately after an interview, and when they unravel something that is different from what the candidate mentioned, chances are he/she will not get the job. Lying affects how credible a person is, which is also part of the personality. In addition, employers ‘search the candidate’s digital footprint to make sure personal beliefs won’t clash with the company’s message or harm their reputation.’ (Kimberley Kasper, 2014) Employers would not want to see comments or posts regarding how bad the previous boss is, it just simply shows how childish and unprofessional the person is dealing with the situation.
Make sure that information on your online profile is accurate, that includes experiences in events and activities or even past employers and the reason why you quit the previous job. Employers want to know why you quit your last job: No career advancement? Salary issues? Not in good terms with other employees? Because at the very end, employers are looking for candidates who are suitable for the job, someone who is willing to stay and be happy working in the company. Sabrina Baker, a HR consultant with Acacia HR Solutions puts it this way, “The resume and interviews are my indicator of whether an individual has the skill set to do the job, but online profiles can help me determine if their personality is going to fit in with the culture and environment of the job at hand.”
Therefore, employers are constantly seeking for the best talents, shifting some of their focus on online recruitment where they may be able to reach out to a different talent pool. When on the lookout for potential candidates, employers can browse and understand more about the person based on their online profiles, knowing if they are the best fit for the company.
Kimberley Kasper (2014). Does A Candidates Online Reputation Affect Your Decision To Hire Them? Jobvite. Available at: http://www.jobvite.com/blog/candidates-online-reputation-affect-decision-hire/ [Accessed at December 3, 2014]
Kimberley Kasper (2014). The 2014 Social Recruiting Survey Infographic. Jobvite. Available at: http://www.jobvite.com/blog/2014-social-recruiting-survey-infographic/ [Accessed at December 3, 2014]
Carolyn Hyams (2012). Personal Branding on LinkedIn: 10 Mistakes to Avoid. Available at: http://www.jeffbullas.com/2012/11/09/personal-branding-on-linkedin-10-mistakes-to-avoid/ [Accessed at December 3, 2014]
Graham Snowdon (2011). The Rules of Social Recruiting. The Guardian. Available at: http://www.theguardian.com/money/2011/aug/19/rules-social-recruiting-linkedin-twitter-facebook [Accessed at December 3, 2014]
Cary Cooper (2011). You’ve been Googled: What Employers Don’t Want to See In Your Online Profile. The Guardian. Available at: http://careers.theguardian.com/careers-blog/google-online-searches?intcmp=239 [Accessed at December 3, 2014]