Social Media


Social media has quickly become one of the main platforms for business interactions. It provides more opportunities to promote your personal brand and make connections, but there are also new rules of etiquette of which you must be aware. An online mistake lasts forever, and you could potentially destroy your brand and ruin your chances of landing the job you desire. With employers now using Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn to recruit, it's important to recognize how to be successful in social networking.

Who's Using It

  • 90% of U.S. companies are using social media as a recruiting tool
  • 69% of recruiters have rejected a candidate based on the content of one of their social media profiles
  • 68% of recruiters have hired candidates due to their presence in a social network
  • More than 70% of jobs are found through networking
  • Most common social networks used to screen candidates:
    • Facebook: 76%
    • Twitter: 53%
    • LinkedIn: 48%

Source: "How Recruiters Use Social Networks to Screen Candidates," Mashable.

General Rules of Etiquette

  • Use your real name and a professional, appropriate profile photo
  • Do not mix business and pleasure
    • If necessary, have separate profiles, accounts and blogs for personal and professional use
  • Use proper grammar and correct spelling in all online writing
  • Remember that even if you think you have the highest privacy settings, there's still a chance anyone can see what you post
    • A woman lost her job because she said she had a migraine and had to stay in a dark room, but was caught later that day updating her Facebook page
    • A job candidate for Cisco tweeted about being offered a job but that he would hate the work. A Cisco employee saw it and reported it to the hiring manager
  • Even if you choose to use Facebook socially rather than professionally, do not post anything you would not want to see on a billboard
  • Employers range in what they're looking for. Some may wish to see:
    • You have a sense of humor
    • You are mature (no inappropriate photos, behavior or posts, such as publicly fighting with a friend)
    • Your writing skills and that you're using proper grammar
    • Your interests
  • The most important thing in your profiles is to show that you are mature
  • Do not post photos of yourself or others drinking or partying, even if you are 21 or older
  • Do not send application or game requests to people and avoid obnoxious status updates and tweets