7 Important Reasons Public Social Media Profiles Can Actually Help You Land The Internship Or Job

Tuesday, August 8, 2017 New York, NY, USA

7 Important Reasons Public Social Media Profiles Can Actually Help You Land The Internship Or Job - Taylor Mead
(Photo by Jess @ Harper Sunday from Pexels)

Going into my junior year of college, I had what I call a social media revelation.

At the time, I was on the hunt for the perfect summer internship opportunity when I was contacted on LinkedIn by a man who was impressed by my detailed profile.

Though I was definitely flattered, I had been told that my account was impressive before — including by LinkedIn's constant "All Star" profile reminder whenever I logged in to my account.

The real surprise came when the man — Alan Katzman, the Founder and CEO of Social Assurity — told me that not only was my LinkedIn account impressive, but my entire "digital footprint" was, too.

Digital footprint? Was I leaving a little trail behind me on the Internet? I couldn't help but wonder whether my then-private accounts were being seen by everyone and if so, how?

Shortly after I began my summer internship with Alan and eventually made my accounts public. The biggest lesson I learned:

Many millennials were taught to "hide" their social media profiles instead of leverage them.

This struck me because I had never thought about using my social accounts to elevate myself before our meeting. While I didn't have any incriminating photos of me out there, I always thought having my accounts set to private was just... well, safe.

What I learned, though is that keeping a profile public can actually be very beneficial to those on the job or internship hunt.

Here are just a few of the reasons it is helpful to have a public social media profile:

1. Recruiters look for potential employees who are professional, well-rounded, and would get along with their other employees. Having access to social media profiles adds an extra oomph to that 1-page résumé you've sent them — almost like attaching a more authentic cover letter.

2. Public profiles tell prospective employers you have nothing to hide. If hiring managers go to search for you after looking at your résumé and see your private profile, they could lose interest or raise questions.

3. 33 percent of hiring managers found information online that caused them to hire a candidate.

4. 40 percent of the U.S. workforce will be freelancers by 2020. This "gig economy" is fueled by social media.

5. 35 percent of employers are less likely to interview applicants they can't find online.

6. 92 percent of hiring managers will check a candidate's social media during the hiring process.

7. 75 percent of recruiters have hired a candidate through social media.

(Statistics Courtesy of Social Assurity)

I mean... it's kind of hard to argue with stats like this, isn't it? Now, if you haven't already, I'd consider cleaning up your digital footprint. You never know when you might get hired through Instagram.