Career Services

Lebanon Valley College

How many employers actually screen using social media?

According to….

  • The CareerSpots video – Perils of Social Networking – 26% of employers regularly use social media sites to gain information about candidates.
  • The New York Times article – Social Media History Becomes a New Job Hurdle (July 20, 2011) – “75 percent of recruiters are required by their companies to do online research of candidates. And 70 percent of recruiters in the United States report that they have rejected candidates because of information online.”
  • Reppler.Com offers a report – Job Screening with Social Networking – that 91% of the employers who participated in their survey use social networking sites to screen prospective employers

So who is correct?  What’s the true percentage of employers who screen candidates through social media?

Who cares?!  The fact that there is any percentage of employers who look into a candidate’s online persona should be enough to convince people to use caution and common sense prior to posting information/pictures/quotes/videos/etc. on the internet.  Whether or not you agree with the practice of pre-screening in this manner does not prevent a potential employer from doing it anyway.  Although your online reputation may not be able to tell an employer if you can or cannot perform specific job responsibilities, it might give them concerns about your level of maturity and professionalism.  In the job search process, that concern may be enough to set your application aside and move on.

The typical advice is that you shouldn’t post anything that you wouldn’t want your grandmother to see –I suggest you up the stakes a bit on that saying and follow the rule of not posting anything you wouldn’t want a potential employer to see.