POST WITH CAUTION:
Employers are turning to social networking sites as a way of screening, hiring, and potentially eliminating candidates. Many employers use these sites to identify questionable material, comments, or photos that may prevent them from hiring or interviewing you.
Be Your Own Online Agent
The Internet should be used to build your professional identity. If you find damaging information about you posted on another person’s website or blog, ask him/her to remove the information. Post positive and professional information on sites liked LinkedIn.
Secure Social Networking Sites
Clean up your Facebook and other accounts. Remove questionable pictures, blog entries or comments that could cast an unfavorable impression.
Periodically search your name. Online information can be inaccurate, out-of-date, or worse, embarrassing. Be sure to perform searches on multiple search engines using multiple names, terms, and associations.
Your Online Application Checklist
Use the following suggestions to ensure your unique skills and talents stand out—even in cyberspace:
- Follow directions--be careful to enter the correct data in the correct field.
- Ask for advice on completing the application from a recruiter or alumnus inside the organization you are targeting.
- Include numbers and statistics in your success statements (see Building Effective Success Statements).
- Tailor your application to the position.
- Use keywords, buzzwords, and industry. verbiage; the content of the job advertisement should be your model.
- Create a skills-based section if the application doesn’t specifically ask for it; you might put this in an optional section.
- Complete all fields—including optional fields or comments sections.
- Include a targeted objective or headline.
- Use quotes from letters of recommendation in a comments section.
- Follow-up your application with a personal email (see Follow-up).