Why You Need Clean Social Profiles to Job Search Successfully

Feb 20, 2021

Why and How to Clean Up Your Online Profile.

Not all jobs require a presence on SoMe platforms. However, choosing not to have a social media presence is a statement in itself, and people may wonder if you have anything to hide. Employers may also contemplate if you are unengaged, unwilling, or unable to connect to others.

CareerBuilder (2018) found that 47 percent of employers state that they are less likely to call that person in for an interview if they can not find the candidate online. 

Your online persona can help you or hinder you in your job search. Ensure that all your contact points (Facebook, LinkedIn, personal website, and so forth) are consistent with your wanted branding and up to date.

Most employers are looking at your social media pages to learn about your real personality and lifestyle. Is your social image aligned with your professional branding on LinkedIn and in your application?

Employers want to know that you are a good fit for their company culture. If you are well-rounded, do showcase your range of positive interests.

If you are not using LinkedIn, Facebook may be your primary platform for showcasing your professional side. You might want to use them purposely to support your professional engagement and dedication.


Clean up your online profiles and communication 

Surveys show that most companies do online research of candidates. Some studies claim that as many as 90% of companies google their candidates before making a hiring decision. Headhunters are even more diligent.

Employers are also looking to see examples of skills, experiences, progression, turnover, and relationships. Here is what you need to do to enhance your brand and become a better match for the jobs you seek: 


  1. Congruence - Ensure that dates are congruent with the ones in your CV and that your titles are not in conflict with your application.
  2. Cultural fit - having a lifestyle compatible with your professional persona, which is favorable to the company culture.
  3. Representability  - you need to be representative on and off company time and premises.
  4. Attitude and personality are important. Do you showcase a personality that people want?

Pictures speak more than 1000 words, and people will make up their minds about how you are as a person based on your photos. Photographs may enhance your chances of getting hired. Potential employers look for congruency and cultural fit. They may like to know that you stay active, that you are charitable, and contribute to your community.

Inappropriate pictures may also limit your opportunities. One employer passed on their number one candidate due to a picture of the candidate wearing a cannabis t-shirt.

Photos showing an excessive need for exposure (selfies), nudity, inappropriate outfits, heavy partying, drug use, political or religious involvement, or inappropriate behavior may cause dismissal. Change the settings to private for unprofessional images, posts, and communications that cannot be removed or deleted.

Recruiters may also reject you if you have made negative comments on social media. Negative footprints that might sabotage your chances of getting hired are:

  •  Distributing political or controversial content
  •  Derogatory or discriminating comments, statements, or  humor
  •  General gossip
  •  Speaking negatively about other people
  •  Sharing too much personal information about yourself or others
  •  Sharing confidential or sensitive information 
  •  Taking down or disrespecting your current or previous company
  •  Inappropriate photos or party pictures
  •  Expressing positive reaction to inappropriate material or content with a negative attitude
  •  Lies or extreme exaggerations
  •  Letting people tag you or post content that includes any of the points mentioned above
  •  Being connected to people that violate the points mentioned above.
  •  Selfies: 18 % of recruiters disqualify candidates due to  selfies (Turczynski, 2021)

Google yourself to see what comes up and go through it all. If you need to get removed, seek help from online image management services such as Reputation.com


Bilde av Tracy Le Blanc fra Pexels

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