In August 14, 2009 I wrote about how web visitors are flocking to career sites such as Hotjobs and Monster during the current recession. More than 65 million visitors checked out career sites in June 2009. This is great news for career sites because that provides a lot of leads for the HR professionals that post jobs at career sites.
How do HR professionals check on those leads?
Turns out that about 45% of HR professionals in the United States are using at least one social network to check on those leads.
Undergraduate and graduate students, listen up!
That means that your career counselor is not kidding around when saying that you need to clean up your social network pages.
How HR Professionals Analyze Your Facebook Profile
These are the top tools that U.S. HR professionals use to screen job applicants. A summer 2009 survey conducted by Harris Interactive for CareerBuilder.com indicates that 47% of U.S. HR professionals use Google to search for the names of their job candidates. 29% of U.S. HR professionals use Facebook and only 26% use LinkedIn.
The findings were more likely to get candidates rejected than hired: 35% of HR professionals said social networking content had caused them to eliminate a candidate, while only 18% reported deciding to employ someone based on a profile.
Take note of the top reasons that a HR professional will reject your job application after looking at your Facebook profile:
It is not a surprise that the 2 top reasons that people get rejected based on their Facebook profile are “provocative or inappropriate photographs or information” and “information about drinking and using drugs”.
However, there are job applicants that really stand out as great candidates after their social networks profiles have been screened. Specifically, HR professionals are looking for a match between the applicant’s personality and the company’s culture.
What are some great social network practices?
Take a look at the list below. Some are very specific to LinkedIn (“other people posted great references about the job candidate”) but the general theme is a good mix of professionalism, creativity, and character.