With an increase in competition for jobs across the United States, employers are taking extra measures to confirm that candidates are the right fit for their company. One of the latest, and most useful trends in the job industry, does not involve looking at a resume or an individual’s cover letter.
As social media has become more prominent in the 21st century, many companies perform basic background checks on social media sites such as Facebook or Twitter to gain insight into an individual’s personal life. Companies can view a person’s interests, hobbies, and social life by simply viewing the candidate’s profile and pictures that are online. Dan Schawbel of TIME details the new tasks of recruiters in his 2012 article, as he focuses on the new methods of recruiting within companies. “Companies are inspecting social profiles to weed out candidates and to get a sense of whether a particular applicant is likely to fit into the culture or not. What you post or Tweet can have positive or negative impact on what recruiters think of you,” Schawebel says.
Despite companies’ attempts to gain valuable information on their perspective employees, candidates are catching on to the recruiting of tactics of employers. Many applicants “untag” themselves from photos that might suggest partying or illicit behavior, while others change their profile name completely. Although many companies result to browsing Facebook for information regarding potential employees, wall posts and photos are not always indicative of the employee in a job setting. Research has shown that Facebook profiles do not correlate with the quality of an individual’s job performance, resulting in human resource recruiters going with their instinct regarding the hiring of a candidate. Although the impact that Facebook profiles have in job employment is questioned, candidates are consciously aware that their social media sites could affect their job search.