In the age of social media, your online presence is increasingly integrated with many other parts of your life, so it’s no surprise that social media has become relevant in job searches. Many job seekers are beginning to include their social media accounts in their resumes to stand out to potential hiring managers.
But is this a good idea? Like most aspects of a job search, including your social media accounts on resumes and cover letters can have benefits but also downsides. If you decide to include social media on your resume, you need to know the best practices and what to avoid.
Learn about the growing importance of social media in job searches and how you can best incorporate your social media accounts into your resume to maximize your chances of finding your dream job.
The Growing Importance of Social Media in Job Searches
Since social media took off over the past decade, the internet has become a major force in searching and applying for a new job. Hiring managers are increasingly turning to social media to recruit new candidates.
A 2018 survey from CareerBuilder found that around 70% of hiring managers actively use the internet and social media to scout new hires. But almost half of them reported they do not contact job applicants who do not have an online presence.
For this reason, listing your social media profiles on your resume is an excellent strategy for establishing your online presence to potential employers. In addition to demonstrating your online presence on important social media pages such as Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn, this can also help show off your personal brand and allow you to stand out among other candidates.
Social media sections on resumes can also vary in importance depending on the position you are applying for. Many positions now involve extensive social media posting for promotional purposes and require a candidate with an already-established social media presence.
Careers in social media marketing or as a social media manager will require extensive social media usage. So, including your social media background can be an essential means of demonstrating qualifications and showcasing your online presence.
How to Incorporate Your Social Media Presence in Your Resume
As with all elements of resume writing, your social media information should follow a few key rules to help you in your job search. While social media may be a necessary aspect of your job search, a lot of social media content can also affect your ability to write a professional resume that will appeal to hiring managers.
Here are a few basic rules for incorporating your social media pages into your resume.
Avoid Irrelevant or Inappropriate Information
If your social media pages contain information that establishes your qualifications for the position, your online presence, or relevant skills, you should include them.
Avoid social media information that is inappropriate. Lewd photos, vulgarity, or potentially offensive statements may lead hiring managers to exclude you from interviews. If a company hires you, any social media platform you have will also reflect on that company.
Make Sure That Everything is Recent and Up-to-Date
It’s also vital that any social media information you include on your resume is recent and up-to-date. Social media profiles that have not been used recently will not showcase any relevant skills or competencies to hiring managers or help establish your online presence.
For example, your LinkedIn profile page can be an excellent way to network with potential employers and show off your work history. However, if you have not updated your LinkedIn profile for several years, it will not provide hiring managers with any information that they may want when deciding on whether or not to hire you.
List Information in Relevant Sections of Your Resume
You should also ensure that you only include your social media information in relevant sections of your resume. For example, you should only include social media pages under your resume’s work experience section if these pages relate to a particular job you previously had.
If you did not work in social media marketing, management, or a related career, including your personal social media pages as work experience may come across as an attempt to pad an otherwise lackluster work history.
If you have used social media in a way that is relevant to the position you are applying for, you can include your profiles in the relevant skills or experiences section. For example, if you have used social media to promote your own freelance projects or creative work, you can include them as evidence of your skills in social media marketing. If not, you should include your profiles in a general about me or miscellaneous section.
When to Include Different Social Media Profiles
There are many social media pages, all of which have varying degrees of value for your resume. When deciding whether to include a social media page on your resume, you should examine the relevance of each for the position you’re applying for.
In most cases, LinkedIn is the best social media page to include on a resume. It will provide a broad picture of your work experience, education, relevant skills, and networking contacts.
Include your LinkedIn page on your resume if it includes comprehensive data on your work experience and if you have maintained it with accurate information. It may be helpful to include your LinkedIn page if it includes a portfolio of relevant work.
When deciding whether to include Twitter in the social media section of your resume, you should examine how your Twitter page will portray you to a hiring manager.
If your tweets touch on information relevant to the job, promote your past work, or inoffensively establish a strong online presence, you should include it. However, if your Twitter page is too personal, casual, or potentially controversial, leave it off.
Facebook is the least likely of all social media pages to provide any value to your resume. For most people, Facebook serves as a purely personal site to keep up with friends, family, and personal interests.
If you have used Facebook as a means of promoting or marketing, or if you think it can demonstrate helpful connections or an online presence, consider including it on your resume.
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