It's true: Facebook can bite

Although the danger of social media to job seekers has been running through the rumour mill for some time, an Australian survey proves it is true that careless postings can come back and bite.

The research found that 12% of employers have rejected job applicants based on what they have found on the applicant’s Facebook or Twitter postings, according to reports. Inappropriate photos and discriminatory comments were the biggest detractors.

More than a quarter of Australian employers are using social networking sites to screen job candidates, and almost half of these employers admitting to turning away prospects based on something they have seen on Facebook or Twitter.

The good news is that social media can be made to work for job applicants too. The same study found that more than a third of Australian employers who screen social profiles have hired prospects based on positive things they have seen.

So, in addition to all the security and privacy considerations social media users have to bear in mind, an important question to ask with every posting is how would this appear to a prospective employer?

If whatever it is you intend to publish would not support a job application, do not post it. Otherwise, it could bite.

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