Employers in Canada are screening potential job candidates on social media before offering or sometimes interviewing them. This applies to both newcomers and Canadians alike.
In January 2023, a survey was conducted by Harris Poll, a global consulting and market research firm, on behalf of Express Employment. Express Employment is a leading global staffing provider. The survey found that more than 60% of Canadian companies (65%) say they screen a candidate’s social media. Of this group, 41% said they found content on a job candidate’s social media that led them to decline the job offer.
Refining and editing your social media should be a priority in the early stages of your job search. Some employers start checking a candidate’s social media at the very beginning of the process, while others wait until the final stages of the hiring process.
What Are Employers Looking For?
Jessica Kullo, owner of several Express Employment Professionals locations in Edmonton, talks CIC Updates About some of the things to watch out for as a newcomer to social media. She said that when a potential employer is checking social media, they are “looking for any red flags such as inappropriate, unethical, polarizing, or excessive comments or photos. They don’t because they have very strong political views that are being displayed excessively online.
She says newcomers, and some Canadians as well, may not understand that strong political or religious views “can send an image that turns off employers.” She says this can be a big issue for someone who has fled an unstable political climate [and] May be more willing to participate in political conversations or online debates.
This doesn’t just apply to your LinkedIn profile, which employers typically review to get a sense of your professional experience. Culo says that potential employers are most likely to scrutinize whatever social media profiles appear on a Google search.
Social media monitoring doesn’t stop after you’re hired. Harris Poll data notes that 86% of employers said they would fire a current employee who makes any “inappropriate post.” Employers define it as anything that is harmful to the company, reveals confidential information, or promotes illegal drug use.
Part of the advice Culo provides is to keep your social media profiles private where possible. “If the nature of the work you do doesn’t require social media to be public, I would say private is better.” A private profile means that potential employers won’t be able to see everything you post.
things to see
If you prefer to keep your social media following public, it can be helpful to keep a few things in mind. “Spelling and grammar are very important.” “This affects the validity and credibility of your posts. Grammar and spelling errors can be a hassle for potential employers,” says Cuello.
Kullo recommends having a consistent personal “brand” across all profiles. “Think about the image you want and what you want your brand to be — and by this I don’t mean that a personal brand needs to be any different than a professional brand,” she says. “It should be one and the same and stick to it. For example, your Facebook profile should not portray your ‘unprofessional self’ while your LinkedIn is ‘professional’. Be consistent across all social media platforms. ”
His final piece of advice is to embrace social media as a job search tool. “You don’t need to fear social media. Use social media to connect with employers you want to work for. It can be a powerful tool! Just used responsibly, with discipline and intention.” should go.