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Social Media is Key to 2022 Job Search

Don Sjoerdsma by Don Sjoerdsma, Career Advice Expert
Published On: May 21, 2020Rated 4.5/5 Stars

A job seeker’s online presence is vital in furthering their career. How job seekers present themselves on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn can improve — or hurt — the chances of landing a desired position. And, with 79 percent of Americans using digital platforms (including a whopping 90 percent of adults ages 18 to 29), and 70 percent of recruiters using those platforms to scan candidates, job seekers can’t afford to ignore their online presence.

We reviewed the latest research on how social media is being used in recruiting and hiring practices. The following takeaways will help job seekers get a leg up on the competition:

  • Write posts related to your career on a regular basis. The stats show that employers want to hire someone who is engaged with their profession in — and outside — the office.
  • Update your LinkedIn profile even when you aren’t actively looking for a job. Recruiters love LinkedIn, and keeping your profile fresh means less work when you’re back on the market. Don’t forget: Information on LinkedIn should always match the details on your resume and cover letter.
  • Review your social media history for offensive or inappropriate content. Even if your profile is private, you run a risk of questionable posts from your youth circulating to the HR department.

Social media is a rising star in finding new opportunities.

About a third of workers (35 percent) say they almost entirely learn about job openings on social media platforms, and 41 percent of younger workers are most likely to search for jobs there. Jobvite

In 2017, 58 percent of students were comfortable with an employer contacting them on social media, up from 38 percent in 2015. National Association of Colleges and Employers


Recruiters agree. Their number one resource for finding top candidates is via social media:

Internal database /website12.4%
Internet job board postings7.9%
Cold calling6.6%
Another source3.7%

LinkedIn and Facebook are recruiters’ preferred platforms — but Instagram is gaining ground.

Seventy-seven percent of recruiters take advantage of LinkedIn. Sixty-three percent recruit on Facebook.

  • Linked IN 77%
  • Facebook 63%

In 2018, a quarter of recruiters (25 percent) are investing time in Instagram, especially millennial recruiters (35 percent) and those working at technology companies (63 percent) — double the number in 2017.


  • 35%millennial recruiters
  • 25%Instagram
  • 53%technology companies


Nearly every company recruits on social media …

The vast majority of organizations (84 percent) already recruit on social media while an additional nine percent plan on starting. SHRM


Fortune 500 companies are even more likely to use social media in their recruiting process:


UMass Dartmouth

Eighty-two percent of employers say social media has helped them find passive job candidates. SHRM


… and some use social media to recruit for every job level.

Percent of recruiters who’ve recruited at the following job levels:

Non- management ,salaried employees87%
Non- management ,hourly employees55%
Executive upeer management45%

Employers do more than find worthy candidates on social media platforms ⁠— they weed out bad ones.

Nearly a quarter of employers (22 percent) who check out candidates on social media are looking for a reason to not hire the candidate. They’re also checking for:

Information that supports their qualification for the job58%
If the candidate has a profession online person50%
What other people are posting about the candidate34%

Employers find plenty of reasons to reject candidates, including:

Information that supports their qualification for the job40%
If the candidate has a profession online person36%
What other people are posting about the candidate31%
Sign of criminal behaviour30%
Lies about their qualifications27%
Poor communication skills27%
Bad mouthing their previous employer25%
Unprofessional screen names22%
Sharing confidential information about an employer20%
Lying about absences16%
Too much social media activity12%

While it sounds like a minefield, having a social media presence is increasingly important.

Nearly half of employers (47 percent) say that if they can’t find a candidate online, they are less likely to call the candidate for an interview.  CareerBuilder

Information that supports their qualification for the job47%

Your posts just might help get you hired. Candidates have been hired by showing:

Nearly half of employers (47 percent) say that if they can’t find a candidate online, they are less likely to call the candidate for an interview.  CareerBuilder

Information that supports their qualification for the job37%
A professional websites33%
A well rounded wide range of intersts31%
A strong fir with company culture based on their personality31%
Great communication skills28%
Award or accolades26%
Refrences from other23%
Interaction with the employer's social media accounts22%
Compelling content21%
A large following18%

Social media accounts are also a primary source of work for freelancers.

Here are the top five ways freelancers find work:

Friends & family45%
Social media40%
Previous freelance client38%
Professional contracts36%
Online ads/classified27%

But always use social media carefully. Many employers keep an eye on your online presence even after you get the job.

Nearly half of employers (48 percent) say they use social media to keep a tab on current employees — 10 percent check every day. CareerBuilder


Your old posts could come back to bite you. Clean up your digital past to avoid future problems.

As of September 2018, only 18 percent of adults in the United States had altered a social media account when they were applying for jobs. Morning Consult


Companies should be careful as well. Job candidates are watching your online presence and docking those who have a bad reputation.

Fifty-five percent of job seekers say they’ve decided against applying for a job after reading a negative review of the company. Career Arc


One-in-three job seekers say they’ve shared at least one negative review of a previous or prospective employer. Career Arc

Here are two of the most popular sites for vetting employers (and what you can learn):


  • AT&T has 23K employee reviews
  • Employers are rated one to five stars in the following categories: culture & values, work/life balance, senior management, compensation and benefits, and career opportunities
  • CEO performance, whether you’d recommend the company to a friend and positive business outlook are rated 1–100


  • AT&T has 40.7K employee reviews
  • Employers are rated one to five stars in the following categories: work/life balance, compensation/benefits, job security/advancement, management and culture
  • CEO performance is rated 1–100
  • Top questions about the company

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