90% of Employers Consider an Applicant’s Social Media Activity During Hiring Process

Social Media Screening

If you want to hire top talents for your small business, you should look beyond the resumes of the potential candidates.

According to a new survey, 90% of employers find social media important when they evaluate candidates. What’s more, 79% of HR professionals have denied a job to a candidate due to inappropriate content on social media.

Small businesses often struggle within their segments as well as with big companies to secure good candidates with leadership, critical thinking, and problem skills. As a result, small business owners sometimes hire the wrong person in haste. Needless to say, bad hiring can cost small businesses dearly.

Therefore, you should leave no stone unturned to steer clear of wrong candidates and hire only the top talents. And social media can play a critical role in evaluating candidates’ attitude and mindset.

Social Media Screening

Gone are the days when employers used to hire candidates solely based on their resumes. Now, most employers check potential candidates’ online presence as well.

98% of employers, as the survey states, conduct background research about candidates online to know more about them. Almost 43% of HR professionals rely on Google to research job applicants.

If you haven’t been doing online research about candidates, you should start it immediately because your competitors might be doing it already to find the right candidates.

Social media users are expected to reach 3.32 billion by 2022, and Internet users spend 144 minutes daily on social media networking sites.

So, it is imperative that you must check job candidates’ social media profiles as well.

In fact, 90% of employers believe that social media is important to assess job candidates, as the survey states.

Social Media Screening

What should you consider while screening social media content posted by the potential candidates?

Social media content that triggers red flags can include:

  • Any type of hate speech
  • Images of illegal drug use
  • Illegal or illicit content
  • Negative comments about previous jobs or clients
  • Deceptive, scammy posts
  • Threats to people or past employers
  • Confidential or sensitive information about people or previous employers

What people like, share, or comment on social media says a lot about them.

So if you dig deeper into how potential candidates behave on social media platforms, you can learn a lot about their personalities. Doing so will help you in hiring people with the right mindset for your small business.

How to Do Social Media Background Checks

It is completely legal for small business owners to check public social media platforms of job candidates, but checking anything beyond public social media accounts is a grey area.

Also, it is important that social media background checks must have the full Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) compliance.

Therefore, you should always go for an FCRA compliant company to get social media screening done.

If you want to do it yourself, you should focus on five key platforms, including Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram. And You must get written consent from job candidates to carry out social media background checks.

When you are conducting social media background checks, you should try to get a sense of your candidates as a person. Working hard only to find damaging information might not give you an overview of their true personality.

You might find some personal content of job candidates on social media, but you should not ask them any personal questions as most candidates find it uncomfortable talking about personal life.

About the Survey

Clutch, a sister website of The Manifest, conducted the survey. It Included 505 full-time employers in the US. The survey’s participants include hiring managers, human resources generalists, recruiting/staffing specialists, executives, and other professionals responsible for hiring. You can click here to know more about the survey.

Image: Depositphotos.com

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Sandeep Babu Sandeep Babu is a cybersecurity writer. He writes about malware, data security, privacy, and other cybersecurity topics for SBT and other reputed platforms.