The social media fails that will stop you from winning your dream job - Career HQ
What’s going on? Your CV is great, you’ve created a relevant and tailored cover letter and still the phone is not ringing for a job interview. Could there be something else in the equation that is putting a future employer off? 
social media, selfie, online bullying, employee, employability, job hunting, job search
post-template-default,single,single-post,postid-1956,single-format-standard,ajax_fade,page_not_loaded,,qode-title-hidden,qode_grid_1300,side_area_uncovered_from_content,footer_responsive_adv,qode-content-sidebar-responsive,qode-theme-ver-12.0.1,qode-theme-bridge,wpb-js-composer js-comp-ver-5.4.5,vc_responsive

The social media fails that will stop you from winning your dream job

What’s going on? Your CV is great, you’ve created a relevant and tailored cover letter and still the phone is not ringing for a job interview. Could there be something else that is putting a future employer off? Are social media fails stopping you from winning your dream job?

A 2020 survey by The Manifest found that 90% of employers say social media is important when assessing candidates for roles. Furthermore 79% of the HR managers surveyed said they’d turned candidates down for roles based on their social media. In a 2018 survey by CareerBuilder, 43% of employers admitted to using social media to check up on their current employees also. Your social media offers the quickest look into your life beyond your CV and this is often what employers want to know about – whether you’re a current employee or looking for a new role.

So what are the ultimate social media fails that will keep you out of a job or get you into trouble with your employer?

social media





The point of social media is to share with everyone right?

Every social media platform has different privacy settings. It’s easy to go into each of your accounts and make sure only your intended audience can see things. It only takes a few minutes to change who has access to your posts and photos. This one small change can immediately remove lots of social media fails before potential employers see them. If you need help then the NSW Department of Education Digital Citizenship site has lots of information on how to do this.

Don’t untag all of those old and wild photos 

There is nothing like a string of late night photos or old swimsuit modelling photos from the past few summers to quickly put off a future employer. Remember employers have likely looked at your social media before they meet you. Think about what image you want them to have in their mind.

The solution is simple. Spend some time going through all of your social media channels and delete or untag all of the photos that could potentially be considered risky or that you wouldn’t be happy to share with your new employer. We recommend that you veer towards being more conservative when deciding what’s appropriate and if in doubt untag yourself.

Keep up all of your very personal or radical posts 

We’re now in a world where sharing personal details or opinions online is commonplace. Your posts reflect your values and opinions. Employers, when looking at your posts, want to know if the company’s values align with yours. We recommend you spend some time considering what are the values and opinions that you are happy to share online. Then think about whether a potential employer might be impressed or put off by these. It’s fine to have strong views around things, just remember that some employers may find particular views off-putting.

Write negative things about your last job 

Trashing your last role or your former colleagues online has to be one of the easiest ways to blacklist yourself from a new job. If a future employer sees a post like this, it’s not difficult for them to picture their own company or team being treated in a similar way.

Don’t update or even bother with LinkedIn 

LinkedIn is such a popular employment platform and represents your professional image to employers. If you want to look like you’re not trying to find employment, leave all of your information out of date and don’t update your profile picture. We recommend you at least spend time making sure that your LinkedIn is up-to-date and reflects your skills and experience. It’s worth remembering that according to LinkedIn’s statistics 3 people every minute get a job through the platform.

Here is a basic toolkit designed by LinkedIn to help you get started:

Enter into highly fuelled online debates 

Social media is a hot bed for extreme digital debates. With the click of a button you can fall into an online argument. While this can be appealing, your trigger happy thumb can easily put off future employers. Before you click ‘post’ try to think about whether this argument would impact how an employer views you. We also recommend going back through your profile and deleting any highly fuelled threads or those that you don’t think would reflect the values of the companies you’re applying to.

Be cautious with what you put online

Overall, we recommend being cautious when it comes to what you put online. Your data does not disappear and it’s important to think about the impact that your social media could be having on your job search. This doesn’t mean post nothing, but it does mean taking a more tailored approach to how and what you share so that this aligns with the opportunities you want to create in your career and in your life.