Advice Column, Parenting

How your online reputation affects your job hunt

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You might not have considered this before, but did you know that your online reputation can have a significant impact on your job search? As more and more recruiters start vetting candidates via search engines, it’s essential to see your social media presence as more than just a way of connecting with friends and family.

From Facebook to LinkedIn and Instagram, there are thousands of ways to share your views online. But without the proper privacy settings in place, you might be putting potential employers off. Here are a few tips and tricks to ensure your credibility can be conserved!

A note on why you need an online presence

According to a 2018 survey on HR managers, job seekers that don’t have online visibility are handicapped in their job search!

  • 66% of employers use search engines to perform background checks on potential candidates
  • 47% of employers are less likely to consider a possible candidate for an interview if the individual doesn’t have an online presence
  • 20% of employers ignore applicants that have no online proof of their information

If you’re invisible online, employers will assume you’re behind the times or hiding something. Without a solid online reputation, your application will likely get lost in the masses.

How to ramp up your professional online reputation

Be considerate about what you share

Search engines dig deeper into Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn than ever before. This means that your personal information can easily be found in places you might not expect it to show up. Just like your personal details, don’t post or share anything that you wouldn’t want prospective employers to see. Restrict your Facebook content and only allow invited people to view your tweets.

Google yourself

Before applying for that new job, do yourself a favour and have a look at what dirt Google has on you. Turn off personalised results so you’ll see the same results a general member of the public will see. This will give you an objective view of the results.

Optimise your LinkedIn profile

LinkedIn is particularly important for job seekers, and sadly, a lot of people don’t fully optimise their profiles. When composing your profile, don’t write in the first person. Using the third person sounds more professional. By using your name in your profile, you reinforce to Google that your LinkedIn page is highly relevant to a search about you. Use your full name at least twice in your profile, especially at the beginning. Use keywords throughout your profile to describe what you currently do and the types of jobs you’re keen on doing.

Professionalise your images

Image searches on Google are becoming increasingly popular, especially among hiring managers. You want to make sure the images you post online are optimised with your name. Put your name in the image caption, the “alt text” HTML tag, and even in the image file name.

Need more help?

Adzuna not only lists thousands of live vacancies in one place, but they also dish out some of the most useful and inspiring pieces of career advice for South Africans looking to boost their chances of success during the job search!

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