These days, you are as likely to have social media presence if you are someone’s grandmother as if you are a college student. Social media accounts, from the major ones like Facebook and Instagram to the more obscure ones, are almost inevitable for soon-to-be graduates or potential employees who are seeking a career change. But who can see what you have posted, and how can you be sure it won’t offend a potential employer?
Luckily, there a few easy steps to take prior to setting out on the job hunt that will help you with cleaning up your social media before searching for a job.
You’ll definitely want to do some in-depth cleaning up of your social media profiles, tagged photos, and the accounts you like or follow, prior to submitting your resume for your potential new job. One step to take as you are in the transition process is to set your accounts, like Instagram or Twitter, to be private and protected. Sure, there are still ways to get around these roadblocks, but not for honest employers who are just looking at your accounts to get overall idea of your online presence. Once you’ve gotten the all clear that your social media accounts are employer-friendly, you can remove the restriction- but for now, private is preferred.
Log out of your social accounts completely and search for your profile to see what it looks like to the general public.Then, borrow a friend’s account and do some poking around on your profile see how easy it is to dive far back and look at potentially unfavorable photos or comments on public forums that might be detrimental to your job hunt.
With iCloud and other technology to back up your photos and data, there’s no reason to leave an incriminating video, photo, or comment on your social media for a potential employer to flag. Delete items now, and add them back at your discretion at a later date – or just chalk it up to youth and enjoy your newer, cleaner more professional profile.
Since you’re so confident that you have cleaned up your social media before the job search, take advantage of your newly revamped pages and include them in your resume! This will show your future employers that you are professional and don’t have anything to hide. Plus, if you have a large following or post regularly, it may even be an advantage depending on your field.
By digging deep, deleting often, and approaching your social media from your employer’s perspective, you can create accounts that you’ll be proud to appear near the top of your search results.