Series: The job market and your social media profiles

Melissa Spencer December 7, 2017 0

This is the final article of a three-part series solely focused on the effects of technology on human communication and social interactions, specifically on younger generations of people and students. This article will analyze technology’s impact on the job market and social media’s role in the hiring process. The previous two articles in this series focused primarily on the technological impacts of current relationships, the social implications of the emerging realm of online dating, the description of current trends between technology and communication and the ways in which technology impacts every one of us, every single day. If you have any questions or comments on this series, please email editor@etown.edu.

Imagine this: a college student not getting the job they applied for. As surreal as it seems, this is the reality for many students—many students that are not socially conscious and aware of their digital footprints in the real world.

Posts and pictures, even the deleted ones, linger on well after they have reached a climax of likes, comments and shares. Your profiles are a part of your identity. Just like your resumé, they describe, define and sell you to a potential employer. One slip, even if it is a minor one, becomes a part of your digital footprint and part of your identity.

Reflecting on this, it makes sense. If you would not go into a job interview with a red solo cup in one hand, why would you post a picture on the Internet with one? Would you list beer pong as a skill on your resumé?

Believe it or not, talent acquisition specialists and hiring managers research their potential employees and make strong initial judgements on what they see.

According to Assistant Director of Internships & Employer Engagement Tina MacKenzie, the technological impact on today’s job market is incredibly substantial.

“Many employers use technology, and instead of conducting a face-to-face interview for the initial interview, they may conduct a telephone interview, a Skype interview or even other online formats such as Interviewstream,” MacKenzie stated.

“Some systems even have you answer questions and allow you to record, review and revise your answers before submitting.”

However, before the initial interview comes the submission of a resumé, cover letter and personal information to various companies and organizations with vacant positions. The personal information you submit in an application is then a segue into your personal life.

According to MacKenzie, students with inappropriate posts/pictures, inappropriate or incomplete voicemail boxes and inappropriate usernames/emails are less likely to be considered for initial interviews than those who use their social media profiles to their advantages.

“Many companies and organizations have career specific pages on Facebook and Twitter that highlight recruiting needs, internships, open houses and contact information,” MacKenzie said.

“Organizations and corporations want to connect with you. Networking is the number one way to find opportunities. Learning how to use social media to network now will be a skill you use throughout your lifetime.”

Especially for college students and younger job applicants, using social media platforms as networking connections is one of the keys to a successful career.

MacKenzie recommends using social media outlets like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, along with professional platforms like LinkedIn to find companies and jobs that tailor to you. Specifically, with a LinkedIn profile, a user can directly job search, follow companies and organizations and connect with alumni or others involved in the organizations to showcase your skill sets and talents.

Photo by Megan White

“The absence of a LinkedIn profile shows employers that the student is not that serious about his or her professional career,” MacKenzie said. “Companies often optimize their search through hundreds of resumés using keywords and job-specific terminology.”

Therefore, those not signed up on LinkedIn or other professional platforms miss the opportunity to be considered with those whose resumés fall within the optimized searches.

Here at Elizabethtown College, the Career Services Department is available to guide students throughout the entire professional process.

“Career Services is here to assist you with any of your job or internship search needs as well as creating professional resumés, cover letters, professional LinkedIn profiles and mock interviewing,” MacKenzie said.

In addition to individual appointments and weekly drop-in hours, Career Services has just launched the Handshake platform to replace its older networking database, Jobs for Jays.

Like the other professional platforms available to job-seeking students, Handshake uses user-created profiles to connect students to the thousands of jobs available through the database.

Within the database, students can create their own profiles, search by employer or job/internship or scroll through the Events tab to see the events along with on-campus interviews happening throughout the semester.

For more information on Career Services or their appointment and drop-in office hours, please contact either 717-361-1206 or careerservices.etown.edu.

Career Services is also available to alumni and currently faculty and staff, as well as current under and post-graduate students.

 

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