Alex Jenkins
IT Consultant

Read it and Weep

You must have read it – you know – the comments from the FaceBook friend you may or may not know: ‘I drank 14 pints of vodka and drove home in an ice-cream van’, or ‘I flew to Hong Kong without a plane and passport’, or even ‘I’m dating my cat’.

Social Maedia

These are examples of the weird and wonderful world of social media; where people are not so much people, but folk heroes in their own lunchtime. While this may be funny, and entertaining, the reality is that this kind of exposure can make you virtually unemployable.

Every day, social media is trawled by teams of individuals who take social media forums very, very, very seriously indeed. These are those who are tipped to chase down a candidate who’s asking very nicely to be employed, whose CV is on the desk, but they’ve forgotten that their real CV – their social media presence is out there in the cold. Dark waters of the Atlantic, waiting to be torpedoed.

While the new Millennials are seeking work, their Facebook presence may be harming their attempts as a potential employer seeks out the truth on background information, and this decision influences employment decisions, according to researchers.

What’s the evidence here? Well, in a recent study, the employment firm, Reed, discovered that almost fifty percent of managers had made a decision to refuse people for a position because of the information they had turned up about a candidate online.

When you think about it, socialmedia is important; Millennials are highly influenced by the channels they operate through, with platforms such as such as Facebook, YouTube and Twitter at a minimum. It’s when you remember that these places are just about the easiest places to search private information on these people that the mixing of the two is not such a great thing.

‘Social media has become a standard tool for recruiters to help choose who they invite to an interview.’ This is a comment by Martin Warnes, managing director at Reed. Making a safety check on your online presence isn’t just advised – it’s essential.

Many graduates out there are unaware if how accessible their social media profiles are, and very few have limits on whom they allow to access their site – even where that is possible – such as on Facebook. On Twitter, the forum is completely open, and given how many Twitter scandals are constantly cropping up, you’d think that this wouid be more widely known. But it isn’t.

Keeping a professional edge in what you do is essential for those who want to be taken seriously as a trade professional, but if the social media profiles of such people are at a variance with their real personalities – and that these personalities are easily accessible, then there will be a failure to meet the expectations of employers.

The answer to the problem? Think. Check. Change. With just a small element of common sense and a check that your settings are private – or where you can’t control the viewing, change the posting. Make sure that nothing you say has the power to ruin your chances of a new job or promotion.

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