Social Media and Candidate Hiring

Jun 03, 2012

Eurocom released the results of their Worldwide annual survey in March revealing some interesting trends and thoughts in the world of social media.  The research identified that worldwide, one in five technology firms rejected a job applicant because of social media.  However, data made available by BullHorn Reach suggested that in North America 91% of hiring managers screen potential candidates, using a combination of LinkedIn (48%), Twitter (53%) and most commonly Facebook (76%) throughout the hiring process.  Of those screening, 69% did not hire a candidate due to what was discovered on a social media/online source.

In recent articles we read an increasing number of examples.  One article spoke of a worker who was on disability leave and posted pictures of her zip lining in Mexico on Facebook and lost her job.  While deception and fraud make for strong cases for dismissal, there is a mounting battle between people’s rights to express who they are during off-work hours and how they represent themselves and the company by what they share.

For hiring managers and organizations these situations become very difficult moral/legal dilemmas that challenge organizational policy and relations.  We know from research that inappropriate photos account for 11% of candidate rejections of those who have rejected after screening social media.  Inappropriate comments account for another 11%, 9% for content about drinking, 10% for comments on drug use, and the list goes on.  Some of the more legitimate reasons for candidate rejection such as discriminatory comments, poor communication, comments about previous employers, sharing confidential information, and lying about qualifications exist, however, legitimate does not mean legal.  Where does one draw the line and how strong and legal is the case by the hiring managers?

The data exists to help candidates and job seekers improve their chances at getting the job of their choice, and what is shared online is your choice.  It is up to you to determine what may or may not impact your opportunities as a job candidate.

Darryl

Executrade – Your Recruitment Specialists

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