How important is Social Media in your Job Search
We live in an ever increasingly digital world where we are always connected both to work and people outside of work. A big part of what allows this connection is social media. Ask any millennial and they’ll tell you that social media is a must. While social media is great for connecting to an old friend on Facebook or for posting pictures of your lunch on Instagram, it is so much more than that. In fact, many people don’t even realize that it can play an important part in their Job Search.
Social Media can be used by both employees looking for new jobs, as well as by employers looking for new employees. The factors remain the same. Social Media accounts serve as a testament to who or what the employees and companies stand for.
Just as social media can play wonders for a company’s online presence, it can do the same thing for you. It can help create an online presence that will represent who you are as a person. There was once a time where companies didn’t care who or what kind of people worked for them, as long as they got the work done. However, things are changing now. Companies are now actively trying to get the right kind of people for the job, people who share their ideals, motives and values. Companies now think of their employees as an extension of them that represent who and what their company stands for.
One of the ways that companies can find out what kind of person you are is via your social media accounts. You are more likely to be less guarded when posting things online on your own account as you would be on a resume on in an interview. So, an increasing number of employers are now checking out their employees’ before even considering them for an interview.
Another benefit of having an online web presence is the employees know that you are tech savvy and have knowledge of and can manage various social media accounts whether that is Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, or even Snapchat. In today’s day and age this is a great skill to have, one that just might give you an edge over other candidates; after all companies can always utilize this skill in any department.
However, your social media presence can also work against you if it is not a clean presence. As stated previously, companies look to employees to be the extension of the company. Hence, they want people who exude the same kind of principles and ethics. So, if your social media presence is a mess, i.e. inappropriate photos of you from Spring Break or opinions posted on Twitter that undermine what the company is trying to achieve. These kinds of things just might cause you to lose on the position.
In addition to all of this, social media can also be a great tool to search for and get in touch with new job opportunities. Companies often use their social accounts to advertise for job openings. Hence online stalking the companies that you want to work for might just come in handy and allow you to apply for a job even before other people have heard of it.
Additionally, the benefit of social media is that you can directly contact anybody without any fanfare. If you were so inclined, you could directly follow and message the CEO of the company you want to work for or the head of the department that you would like to work in. These kinds of contact would give you an edge in applying for the jobs you want and would definitely help bolster your network.
Social Media can also have another benefit. It can work as a portfolio or even a visiting card. Ask any successful media professional and they’ll tell you that having a positive and effective social media presence is what has driven their success ahead. How do you utilize your social media accounts as a portfolio? It’s simple. For example, an artist can post images of their work on Instagram, or a writer can showcase their work on Facebook, Twitter, or even LinkedIn; a musician can showcase their work on YouTube.
However, even if you are not an artist or author or a musician, you can still use social media to promote yourself; even if you are just a run of the mill corporate worker like the most of us. Regardless of your field of career there are some things you can do, such as you can write up articles or blogs about things related to your field, you can even start your own blog to promote yourself and the knowledge you have. Or if writing is not your forte, you can at the minimum curate information and other articles online that are related to your field and share them via social media. This will show that you keep abreast of the current updates in your field and that you are passionate about your career.
It also bears to keep in mind that while LinkedIn is the number one professional social media used in the corporate world, it is not the only one. Your entire collections of social media accounts are included in defining the kind of person you are portraying online, and it is that presence that will be the defining factor in whether or not you will be considered for that position or not.