How to Revamp Your Online Presence
In today’s digital age, your online reputation can make or break your job search and speak volumes about you and your qualifications. With virtually every person having some sort of social media presence, it’s never been more important to evaluate the image you’re projecting on the internet. According to a recent survey by CareerBuilder, 70 percent of employers are screening candidates’ social media profiles during the hiring process. This means your first impression doesn’t take place at the interview – it begins online.
The good news is you have complete control over your online presence. It’s imperative you are proactive in making sure employers do not find anything that is misrepresentative of you as a professional. Here are some top strategies to keep in mind when revaluating and revamping your online image:
Choose which social media accounts to make public and private. As an IT professional, you are most likely aware of how most social media sites work. While it’s perfectly acceptable to have a Facebook or Instagram profile, it’s in your best interest to implement privacy settings on these more personal accounts. On the other hand, it’s best for your profile on a professional networking site like LinkedIn to be kept public. Being visible to recruiters and showcasing your skills will be beneficial as you navigate the job search and make new connections. Most importantly, being strategic in what you show others on your social media sites will help you establish boundaries between your personal and professional life.
Highlight your qualifications. Though social media is known to have negative ramifications on the job search when used inappropriately, it is also an extremely effective tool for promoting your qualifications. Be sure to maximize your public profiles so they include detailed information about your education, employment history and skills. In addition, consider securing written recommendations from former employers or colleagues to feature on your LinkedIn profile. Taking advantage of opportunities to promote your professional accomplishments can easily set you apart from the competition.
Actively network. It’s important to remember the basic functionality of social media involves networking. Regardless of what site you’re on, make a habit of connecting and engaging with like-minded professionals. The more you expose yourself to others in (and outside) your industry, the more opportunities you’ll be presented with on a regular basis. Whether it’s a brief information exchange or inquiry to meet for coffee, actively networking should be part of any job seeker’s social media strategy.
When used correctly, harnessing the power of social media can have significant benefits for your job search. Being vigilant about practicing the strategies above will set you up for long-term career success and help you utilize social media in the best ways possible.
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