Social media presence could be featured in one’s resume, former recruiters say.
Social media could be used for more than just sharing highlights of one’s life. A strong social media presence and large amount of followers has become attractive to employers.
Stefan Meredith was a recruiter for six years in the U.K. before moving to Newfoundland. He said, as a recruiter, he was careful about considering someone’s social media when evaluating them for a job.
“In general, it would depend on the social media platform,” said Meredith. “If you approached me for a job and you show me your Facebook page, even if you had 1,000 followers, it wouldn’t affect my decision-making process whatsoever, however, if we are talking about LinkedIn, it’s a different story,” Meredith said.
LinkedIn is a social media platform specially targeted to professionals. The platform is an online resume and helps users network with like-minded people and potential employers.
“It is there to act as a professional portfolio. On LinkedIn, you showcase what you achieved and what you are working on right now.”
Meredith says the number of followers someone has on their social media shows a level of popularity, but it doesn’t necessarily show they can do their job.
It depends on the industry as to how important large amounts of followers are to employers. If they are after a marketing job, follower count is an interesting metric because it is relevant to that industry.
Meredith says people can strategically use social media to present their ongoing portfolio when looking for a job. Even if they are just starting out, the courage to share their work and have it critiqued is a good quality that recruiters notice.
Jenny Mallard was recruiter who worked for the company People Stuff in Newfoundland. She said someone’s social media presence could be used as a personal brand to attract potential employers, but she agrees that it does depend on the industry.
“If you are in the beauty industry or in marketing, it makes sense to use your social media reach because those followers could be potential clients for the company that hires you,“ Mallard said.
“But it’s best to research first because some companies don’t want their employees to be too active on social media.”
However, Mallard said that regardless of the industry people could use their social media as a tool to show their authentic selves.
“When you show your values, what you love and respect, that can help you and the companies that also value those things to find one another.”
But it’s important to be authentic in a creative way. Mallard shared an example of a video she did for an interview where she played the ukulele and sang her “cover letter.” It got her the job.
“On your social media, show what you can offer and put a spin on it.”