Social media and your future boss

According to Ofcom, 66% of adults are on some form of social media and a whopping 62 million hours are spent on social media sites per year.

Whether people are tweeting, posting Facebook statuses, Instagram-ing or vining, there can be a lot to find out about you, your views and what you like or dislike in the social media stratosphere.

Your digital personality is now more than ever becoming a factor when applying for a new role. Don't assume potential employers will just be checking out LinkedIn. Hiring managers and HR professionals are now seeking out social media accounts of potential employees after looking at their CVs or LinkedIn profiles.

According to a survey by CareerBuilder, hirers are checking profiles from Facebook, Twitter, Google + and Instagram. Hiring managers are scouring social channels for activities including drugs, too much drinking, racist or sexist jokes. A hirer uses this information to gauge your professionalism both in and out of the working environment. Other areas include bad spelling, and how you have represented previous employers. So look out for any frustrated tweets you may have said about work in the heat of the moment. We all like to have a good moan, but leave your office gripes away from the World Wide Web.

Many employees think that a candidate's use of Social Media will give a factual reflection of how that person will operate in the business environment.

If you are posting online you need to be aware, what the rest of the Internet can see and each social network, is different. Facebook lets you share updates by 'Friends only'. However, if your friends or connections share that information, this could be widely viewed outside your social circle. Even if you've restricted access to certain people, comments or photographs may be copied by people your circle of online friends. Social media sites like Twitter are an instant blogging site, but it could easily come back to haunt you, take care about what you post online or even share. This type of social post could impact your career both now and in the future. In this ever-sharing arena will live in, be careful of the photographs you post online, especially in a work environment. We tend to forget confidential data is all around us in our work places. So when taking a picture of your cake that Irene from accounts bought you, make sure nothing is in shot that shouldn't be.

A good idea is to Google yourself and see what information the search engine supplies. What is visible? What shouldn't be there? Unlike LinkedIn, you don't know who is potentially looking at your accounts if they are not locked down. Double check your privacy settings, and make sure your only allowing people you connect with to see your information.

Social media is not all bad; the same poll showed 29% of managers found beneficial information on social media. Positive attitudes, number of friends and followers can have a big impact on the decision process.

Like in all things, if you wouldn't say it in a room full of networkers don't post it online.

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