An increasingly important component for job-seeking success is your social profiles. If you’re on social media, it’s a safe bet that your future employer will be looking at your posts. According to Jobvite, 52% of recruiters always search for social media posts and 55% have reconsidered hires based on what was found. Adweek.com reports that the top social sites searched are LinkedIn at 92% percent, Facebook at 66%, and Twitter at 52%.
Follow these tips (and use your own judgment!) to make sure your profiles work for you:
- Delete old accounts. Do you have unused accounts? Old dating profiles? Multiple accounts on Twitter or Facebook? If you’re not using them, get rid of them.
- Update privacy settings on each site. Make sure you understand them so that what you want to keep private is kept private. Since privacy settings change regularly, it can be helpful to put a recurring reminder in your calendar to check your accounts episodically.
- Update your photo and info on each site. Even if you’ve made your setting “private” your pic will pop up during a search. A quality photo makes a difference. LinkedIn research shows having a picture makes a profile 14 times more likely to be viewed.
- Delete anything that could be misinterpreted or work against you. Most recruiters recommend that you cut all party pics, political statements, and raunchy remarks because they can be a red flag to a future employer. Use your judgment—if you wouldn’t want your mom to see it, you should probably delete it.
- Stay current on LinkedIn. Not having a profile or having one that is out of date implies you are out of touch with technology or lack credibility. Being active on LinkedIn is also an excellent way to expand your professional network.
- Use keywords. Employers search for talent using keywords. Determine the top words and phrases for your industry and make sure you use them strategically in your profile.
Clean up your profiles on a regular basis so that when it’s critical to have an updated social media profile, you won’t have to scramble.