More than two in five (43 per cent) hiring managers who currently research candidates via social media said they have found information that has caused them not to hire a candidate, up nine percentage points from last year, found a survey by CareerBuilder.
Nearly two in five companies (39 per cent) use social networking sites to research job candidates, up from 37 per cent last year, found the poll of 2,100 hiring managers in the United States.
Employers who took a candidate out of the running for a job after researching social media sites reported finding a variety of concerning content, including:
• the candidate posted provocative or inappropriate photos or info (50 per cent)
• there was info about candidate drinking or using drugs (48 per cent)
• the candidate bad-mouthed previous employer (33 per cent)
• the candidate had poor communication skills (30 per cent)
• the candidate made discriminatory comments related to race, gender or religion (28 per cent)
• the candidate lied about qualifications (24 per cent)/
At the same time, some employers also noted that they came across information on social media sites that made a candidate more attractive or solidified the decision to extend a job offer.
One in five (19 per cent) hiring managers said they found something that has caused them to hire a candidate, including:
• the candidate conveyed a professional image (57 per cent)
• the hiring manager got a good feel for candidate's personality (50 per cent)
• the candidate was well-rounded, showed a wide range of interests (50 per cent)
• the candidate's background information supported professional qualifications (49 per cent)
• the candidate was creative (46 per cent)
• the candidate had great communication skills (43 per cent)
• other people posted great references about the candidate (38 per cent).
"Employers are using all the tools available to them to assure they make the correct hiring decision, and the use of social media continues to grow," said Rosemary Haefner, vice-president of human resources at CareerBuilder. "Hiring managers and human resources departments must carefully consider how to use information obtained from social media and whether it is relevant to a candidate's qualifications."
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