Last week’s topic looked at the positives and negatives of having multiple online identities, which links nicely to this week’s topic. I think it is fair to say that anyone can have an online profile but it takes more time and effort to create an authentic online professional profile.
The trail you leave online (also known as your ‘digital footprint’) gives a surprising amount of information about yourself. After watching this video I googled my name and where I am from. My results are shown below.
This semester I have started my search for a placement for next year. Immediately after sending off my first application I felt the need to amp up the security settings on all of my social networking sites to ensure anything that may have been deemed as unprofessional was hidden from potential employers. The above results show just how easy it is for an employer to find you online and quickly make a decision based on how you market yourself.
Thankfully I changed my privacy settings after applying for my placement as there are many horror stories about employers stumbling across pictures deemed as inappropriate on Facebook, or even inappropriate tweets. An example being Ashley Payne who posted a picture of herself with a glass of wine and pint of beer whilst on holiday on her Facebook. She lost her job.
Jobvite’s statistics show that a huge percentage of employers (94%) use LinkedIn to search, contact, keep tabs on and vet candidates, 66% use Facebook and 52% use Twitter. These statistics alone show the importance of having an authentic online professional profile which markets you appropriately across different platforms. Think how many opportunities could be missed by neglecting the importance of your professional profile!
What mistakes are made when making an authentic online professional profile?
This video shows you what to avoid, but…
What can you do to develop an authentic online professional profile?
I have made this spider diagram to illustrate some of the things I feel are important when developing a professional profile.
It is clear that the times are changing and it is no longer a case of handing over a CV. I have noticed that different companies have many different ways of distinguishing between candidates, for example NEXT requires an online assessment as well as a CV. Other companies such as Asos allow candidates to apply for jobs via their Linkedin pages. LinkedIn is extremely important and when properly used can be an extremely beneficial way of promoting yourself. Below are some important tips when creating a LinkedIn page which will help to establish a well presented and professional profile. It could even be the deciding factor of landing that job you want.
CBS North Carolina (2016) Your professional online profile. Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F_xVRAoZL_c Last Accessed 9 November 2016
Daily Mail Reporter (2011) Mail Online. Available at: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1354515/Teacher-sacked-posting-picture-holding-glass-wine-mug-beer-Facebook.html Last Accessed 9 November 2016
Edmond, D. (2014) Optimize your LinkedIn profile with these 10 key elements. Available at: http://www.komarketingassociates.com/blog/optimize-your-linkedin-profile/ Last Accessed 10 November 2016
Jobvite (2014) Social recruiting survey. Available at: https://www.jobvite.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/Jobvite_SocialRecruiting_Survey2014.pdf Last Accessed 7 November 2016
Ronson, J. (2015). How One Stupid Tweet Blew Up Justine Sacco’s Life. Available: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/02/15/magazine/how-one-stupid-tweet-ruined-justine-saccos-life.html?_r=2. Last accessed 9 November 2016
References for spider diagram
Bowes. P. (2013). Job hunting: How to promote yourself online. Available: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25217962. Last accessed 9 November 2016
The Employable. (2014). How blogging can help you get a job. Available: http://www.theemployable.com/index.php/2014/10/28/blogging-can-help-get-job/. Last accessed 9 November 2016
Washington and Lee University (no date) Developing your online image. Available at: https://www.wlu.edu/career-development/students/professional-online-presence/developing-your-online-image Last accessed 10 November 2016