Role of Social Media in Recruitment Process
Social media has become such an important part of our daily routines that it does not only impact our personal life but our professional one as well. It plays an important role in the recruitment process by making information more accessible for job seekers and recruiters. As a result, both parties save time and money. However, more information, does not always translate to a better decision making. How can social media help the process and how can it negatively impact it?
When the Information Works Against Job Seekers
We usually use social media platforms to share our personal life with our friends, but this does not prevent companies from using this information to make professional decisions. If your privacy settings are set on public, outsiders can browse your profile and what you post. One might argue that there is nothing wrong with this practice unless inappropriate content is posted. Nevertheless, even if such content does not exist, companies can harvest information that they cannot ask during job interviews. Companies are not allowed to use qualifications that are not relevant to the job performance to make hiring decisions. In most cases such information includes: the look, the age, sexuality, family planning and even different habits like smoking. This information can create unnecessary and somewhat negative biases (assuming the above mentioned are not qualifications required for the job opening such as the look for models).
When Information Helps You Get the Job
The information shared online does not always impact the job seekers negatively. In most cases it improves the recruitment process. Platforms such as LinkedIn can give you access to information about the company that is not transmitted to you through the job posting. You can research the size of the company, see their achievements and go as far as look who are the people that work there. These platforms give you the option to get in touch with current employees and ask additional questions. If any of your connections works for the company, the platforms allow you to ask them directly for referrals to make your application stand out. Following the same logic, recruiters can get the professional information about you, that might not be stated in your resume. Such instances include: specific skills and a rate on each skill, past work samples and public recommendation letters.
Overall, the positive impact of social media in the recruitment outweighs the negative one. Creating a professional account will most likely help you as a job seeker. It will offer more privacy for your personal information and provide control on what information your potential recruiters can collect.