As the world wide web connects people all accross the globe, information is becoming more readily accessible. At a time where 411 information phone calls and yellow pages have become obsolete, the internet has become the new source of information. It has gotten to the point of being able to look someone up on Google, find their personal information, and have access to their phone number and address.
With this new means of information, more and more employers are looking up employees and prospective employees online. Many people, especially the younger generations, are not aware of the access employers have to social networking sites, internet profiles and Google.
The important thing to note is that although the proximity of friends dilutes the bigger picture of others looking at your profiles, there are still people that have access to that information and especially pictures! A 2006 Execunet survey of over 100 corporate recruiters shows staggering information that people should consider as they apply for jobs or promotions.
Statistics of Recruiting Research:
|% of Recruiters Who:||2005||2006|
|Used search engines to research candidates||74.7%||76.5%|
|Eliminated a candidate because of online information||26.4%||34.8%|
Some major reasons for candidates not making the final cut were:
- Not meeting the minimum academic requirements
- Not a personality fit
- Legal proceedings against a former employer
- Suspended driver’s license
The above reasons for dismissal are personal and you would think that prospective employers would never guess at what your personality is like before you even interview, right? Wrong! They get a sense of your personality by setting up dummy accounts on social networking sites such as MySpace and Facebook. The same pictures your friends see on your MySpace page are the same pictures employers see. So the next time you have a need to show the world your naked mile experience from last weekends party, remember your friends are not the only ones that are looking at them.
Things that you can do to keep your personal business personal:
- Google your name and do a search on your self, including images (you’ll be surprised at what comes up).
- If you don’t want anyone to see naked photos, drinking photos, or embarrassing stories, then don’t post them!!!
- Set your profile settings to the appropriate restrictions so that only certain people have access ( I would do this regardless of having inappropriate material or not because the minute your profile comes up on a search, it raises a red flag for the company).
In today’s professional world, managing perceptions is an important component to getting hired. You want to have people perceive you as a successful, professional prospect that a major company should hire. You do not want to be known as the party animal of the office or pool of applicants. Hopefully, if you have any pictures or information that would be frowned upon (and if you have to think about it, then you should probably take it down) by prospective employers, co-workers or family, you should consider saving it to your C: Drive on your computer and keeping it for your self. Ultimately, if you don’t want them to see it, don’t upload it!