While an untamed online persona can certainly hinder the job hunt, social media can also be used in a variety of ways to help job seekers. Candidates that use social media to engage with colleagues and show expertise in their profession are at a clear advantage. In fact, 29 percent of recruiters have offered jobs based on a positive online presence, including professionalism, creativity, and verification of skills or references (Smith, J., 2013). Additionally, association with a professional organization makes a candidate 80 percent more likely to land an interview (Kasper, 2012).
Along with using social media to build a professional image, many networking sites are being used as online job boards. More than one-fifth of job postings in the United States can be found on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter, the most popular being LinkedIn with 77 percent of jobs posted there ("Bullhorn Reach," 2012). Likewise, in 2012 LinkedIn was used by 38 percent of job seekers to find job opportunities and build connections (Kasper, 2012).
As social media becomes more integrated into the job search and career professionalism, it is evermore vital for users to be aware of online presence. Online reputation management and self-marketing, like any type of marketing, begins by determining who you are, and what you have to offer.