Recruiter blog: Social media etiquette

By Erica Newman

In today’s world, networking opportunities extend beyond face-to-face interactions. Social media is now part of our everyday lives. We all use it – businesses, recruiters, your family and friends – it’s everywhere. So what are the best ways to leverage social networks for your career? Here are a few easy tips and tricks:

First things first: Think of your own online activity. Is the content you post worth sharing? Ensure that your messages are carefully planned, because thoughtless posts are not always well received. Update often, be active, but like anything else – don’t overdo it. 

Now, let’s look at a few mediums.

LinkedIn is ideal for making connections, promoting yourself and participating in groups. LinkedIn is a powerful tool and easy way to connect - here are a few key tips to being successful on LinkedIn:

    Update your photo (should be clear and professional)

    Update your jobs, projects, and relevant skills

    Follow groups and participate in discussions

    Endorse skills, and ask teamates or connections to endorse your skills.           This establishes credibility.

Do not just use the generic default message when connecting, be sure to include a brief message as to how you know the person or why you would like to connect.

LinkedIn is a great tool for employers to check out a candidate’s work experience online. This means you should avoid any discrepancies (a red flag to employers) and be consistent with what’s on your resumé and profile. As a recruiter, I always check out candidates on LinkedIn.

Let’s talk about Facebook.

“Even after you remove information from your profile or delete your account, copies of that information may remain viewable elsewhere to the extent it has been shared with others…” – Facebook Privacy Policy

Remember, if you can search yourself on the internet, so can everyone else. Be mindful of what you post. You can still show off your personality, or fun side, but bear in mind a few things: Avoid illegal activity, anything derogatory in nature, or anything you may not want your grandmother to see you doing. If there’s no reason to share, use the private message function.

Facebook privacy settings change quite regularly. Check your settings and add the privacy feature to photos, groups, and information as this content may be visible to everyone. At some point, you could be someone’s boss, looking for a promotion or raise, or even a CEO. Be sure there’s nothing online that may discredit you.

Lastly, Twitter.

Twitter is a quick, easy, and concise way to connect. I personally enjoy when candidates connect with me on Twitter, because it’s briefer than an email. Abbreviations are of course appropriate here but be mindful of your choice of wording and grammar – especially if you plan on leveraging Twitter to connect with professionals.

I will close on a note by social media author Erik Qualman that is applicable to students, experienced hires and university or college grads: “We don’t have a choice on whether we do social media, the question is how well we do it.”


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