Using Social Media As A Job-Hunting Tool
December 12, 2019
In today’s age, social media is the most common mode of communication, whether it is on a personal level, or whether it is a corporate brand trying to communicate with its customers, employees, clients, or even prospective employees. And it is understandable too! You are glued to your smartphones, scrolling ceaselessly for hours on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, among other social media.
As industry professionals and brands increase their social media presence, there is a new layer of networking that can potentially happen over these platforms. When searching for jobs, here’s how you can use social media to your advantage:
Follow researchers, publications and influencers in your industry
The fundamental rule of staying updated and aware about your industry apply on social media too. The easiest way to feed yourself industry news, opinions, trends is by following the companies, prospective employers, industry experts, and influencers. Engage with these professionals by sharing their tweets and posts, and show that you have an opinion too. Many companies like AT & T, Penguin publishers etc have a separate account for tweeting job opportunities too. The first point of communication might often end up being your Direct Messages chat window, so make sure your profile looks decent enough.
Research your prospective employers
All companies are present on social media. So in preparation for your interview, don’t just look over the website of the company, also stalk them over their social media. It will give you a sense of the company vibe and potentially give you some ice-breakers. Side-tip: nothing like the Twitter banter and Instagram live updates to help you out here!
Do you like your digital footprint?
Google yourself. And then ask, “Is it okay if the potential employer sees this when they search for me?” If there are social media posts from 10 years back showing up on the first page of the search engine results, get them off the original source. Change the privacy settings to your high school photographs on Facebook to private. No one wants to see that. Try to replace your web presence by creating an effective online portfolio.
Steer clear of these social media sins
- Don’t be tempted to use a ridiculous nickname for your accounts. No one wants to hire “coffeeaddict95” or “cuteashell”
- If the account makes it clear it is yours, don’t go around ranting about work and how much your current boss sucks, unless your account is private.
- Do not include your social media links if you’re not active on them.
- Rule of thumb: If you keep your Tweets and posts PG-rated (no cursing, no slang, mostly proper grammar), and these are not emotional rants about how much your day sucked, there's no problem in including your account/handle, and/or reaching out to prospective employers via those accounts.If you need more precise insights, The Muse runs a course on How to get a job using social media. You can check it out here. If you’re looking to clean up your social media presence because you think employers might not be too keen on hiring you based on that, here’s a handy guide for cleaning.