8 Tips to Ensure Your Social Media Profiles Won’t Harm Your Job Search

You’re looking for a job. Your resume is top-notch. You’ve rehearsal commonly asked interview questions. So, you’re ready to go. But what if your potential employer checks your social media? If your first reaction is uh-oh, you may have more work to do. Follow these eight tips to ensure your social media profiles won’t harm your job search.

1. Delete Accounts You No Longer Use

Lots of inactive accounts could make you appear disorganized. Plus, the more channels you have, the more likely a long-forgotten post could come back to haunt you. If you haven’t looked at your Snapchat account since high school, you may want to shut it down.

2. Lock Private Channels

It’s fine to set aside some accounts for personal use. However, double-check your privacy settings. And remember, privacy settings are never a guarantee. Anything you put online could eventually be discovered, so think before you post.

3. Remove Anything Controversial

A single poor-taste comment or image could cost you a job. As a result, you’ll want to get rid of anything that could make a hiring manager nervous. This includes profanity, drug/alcohol abuse, adult content, criminal activity, political rants, and/or discriminatory comments.

4. Keep Things Positive

In addition to inappropriate posts, potential employers are on the lookout for signs of a bad attitude. Therefore, resist the temptation to publicly complain about your job, your boss, or your co-workers. Also, delete or avoid any references to skipping work.

5. Polish Your Public Accounts

Social media is a wonderful promotional tool too. So, be sure to set up your public channels to reflect your accomplishments and personality. For example, you could highlight your professional expertise on LinkedIn while building your brand on Instagram.

6. Update Your Profile Pictures

Although it seems unfair, forty-one percent of recruiters admitted to forming a first impression based on a candidate’s profile picture. In other words, you could miss out on an interview simply because of a low-quality image (or no image at all). For the best results, choose clear, well-lit photographs in which you appear neat and well-groomed.

7. Use Proper Spelling and Grammar

Employers routinely rank effective communication as one of the top soft skills. Certainly, no one expects your social media feeds to be professionally edited. But if your posts are filled with typos, misspelling, and grammatical errors, a hiring manager may question your writing abilities.

8. Google Yourself

Even if your personal accounts are squeaky clean, a picture posted and tagged by someone else could be floating around in cyberspace. To stay on the safe side, run a few searches on yourself. That way, you can discover any unwelcome surprises before a potential employer does.

Are You Looking for More Social Media Job Searching Tips?

FirstStaff publishes weekly blog posts on topics ranging from cleaning up your social media profiles to using social media to find your next job. When you need some help with your overall job hunt, our recruiters can assist with that. Learn more about the advantages of working with FirstStaff today!


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