5 Tips for a Professional Social Media Presence

Many students and graduates now use LinkedIn to find work. Use it properly and it’s an effective way of networking with other professionals. Get it wrong and it could cost you a prospective position.

A recent study revealed that 90% of employers are now using LinkedIn to find employees, and 65% are using Facebook and Twitter. To make sure you’re giving off the right impression to future employers, take a look at our five ways of ensuring a professional social media presence.

Keep it light
Now firstly, this doesn’t mean don’t have an opinion. Employers will respect employees who can think for themselves. However, what they may not react well to, is you sharing offensive content or getting in to arguments with others online. It can be easy to forget that the way we act online is a reflection of our personality and therefore suitability as an employee. Try to avoid saying anything too controversial.

Keep an eye on tagged photos
Social media has now replaced the photo album. Keep an eye out for any pictures you upload that you’ve been tagged in by friends that you think might give off the wrong impression about you. If they’re inappropriate hide them from your profile.

Check your privacy settings
According to a study by The Safe Shop, 66% of social media users don’t have their privacy settings in use. This means anyone can see your activity, including potential employers checking up on you. By ensuring your social media profiles are kept private, you can keep your profile hidden from anybody you don’t know.

Don’t talk about work
This may seem a bit extreme, but why run the risk? It can be very easy to misconstrue something said on social media and pass it on to a colleague or employer. To be safe, try to avoid discussing work. There may even be non-disclosure clauses in your employment contract that forbid you from discussing work matters so to be safe, don’t bother.

…Or create two profiles
If you find all of these steps too much then the best course of action may be to create separate profiles for your professional and social life. This way you won’t run the risk of saying anything you shouldn’t in front of employers or colleagues. When applying for jobs, offer your professional profile and keep your second for everything else.

Social media has become a vital tool of communication for us all, and it’s no surprise that employers are now using it to check you out too. Be wary of sharing too much online and make sure that if you’re going to keep your profile public that you make sure others aren’t posting things that you don’t know about.

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