Comment on this article and your next boss may read it

A survey by online job site CareerBuilder.com has found that 22% of hiring managers regularly screen social networking sites, like Facebook and MySpace, before hiring new applicants. An additional 9% of hiring managers do not yet screen applicants online but they plan to do so in the future. Two years ago, only 11% of hiring managers answered that their screen applicants online.

34% of those managers have dropped candidates from their short list based on what they have found on the applicant's personal profile. 41% expressed concern with candidates posting information about alcohol or drugs and 40% expressed concern about provocative information or inappropriate images while others looked for poor communication skills or discriminatory remarks. In addition to verifying credentials some would reject applicants that used an unprofessional screen name. It seems that the sword cuts both ways though as 24% replied that they found information that secured their decision to hire the applicant.

For those unafraid to comment on this article,

Would you modify your Facebook/MySpace profile to make it more employer-friendly?
Do you find this an invasion of personal privacy?


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32 Comments

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This is one of the reasons why I closed my Myspace and made by Facebook private. That and I don't put anything I consider private on the damn thing anyways. The only reason I have a Facebook is to keep up with long distance friends who seem too busy to use a phone.

Hrm,

Just looking up my name on wikipedia alone, am I the athlete, baseball historian, justice, lawyer, actor, director, bishop, historian, mormon, economist, missionary, mathematician, virus writer, computer scientist, soldier, doctor, or none of the above.

People are different in their professional lives than they are in thier private life!!! Therefore, it is wrong for employers to look at your Facebook (or at least make decisions on the fact that you sometimes go to a night club & have a drink).

It's ridiculous! I wouldn't jump around the office dancing with two alchopops in my hand screaming my head off to Mr. Brightside, but I would in my personal life, in a club. So, therefore why should a future employer make a decision about whether to hire you, based on your private life? Shouldn't he make the decision based on how you are as a person & the answers you give in interviews!

A better example:

At work, with customers, I talk extremely politely & use a more mature vocabulary than when I am with my friends in my private life. I call people "Sir" & "Madam", but I don't call my friends that - therefore that explains my point! You are different in your private life than you are in your professional work life!

I feel very strongly on this matter, because I should be allowed to have a life & not be discriminated on by a future employer just because I don't act 'professional', in my private life, like I do at work!

Ridiculous!

You use 'sir' and 'madam'? Bit Victorian and obsequious isn't it.... I hate that, so I wouldn't hire you for a job if I found that information out about you. I worked in customer service for years and never used language to lower myself to the level of a servant. Being nice and polite doesn't mean you have to be a customer's bitch monkey.

(joeydoo said @ #2)
You use 'sir' and 'madam'? Bit Victorian and obsequious isn't it.... I hate that, so I wouldn't hire you for a job if I found that information out about you. I worked in customer service for years and never used language to lower myself to the level of a servant. Being nice and polite doesn't mean you have to be a customer's bitch monkey.

Using 'sir' or 'madam' doesn't mean that you're lower than the person you're talking to unless you believe yourself unworthy of the title of sir or madam.

And on the topic of employers making decisions based on what they can find out on the internet, I see no problem with it. If they read your facebook to discover that you were fired from a previous job for neglecting responsibility, then why shouldn't they take this into account when considering employing you?

(Timble said @ #10)
Aren't Facebook profiles 'friends-only' by default?

No... its friends AND network by default.

So if you join a regional network or college network when joining... if they are also in that network then they can see everything. You need to make sure you edit your privacy options if you only want your friends to see your profile.

Make it private so only your friends, and people that you want to be able to access it can. That solves the problem I think.

I would think they have better things to do with there time. Now i dont think it should make a difference on what you have on your facebook page if you get the job. Now if your smoking a blunt in your profile pic or professing to be a neo-nazi on facebook then you dont deserve the job. Only problem i could see is misunderstanding inside jokes and such.

Not exactly, as owners of a service station we constantly interview for the "right" employee, If you put your email address on your resume, I'm googlin' it. We won't dig into FB or MS for dirt but if The Google shows you posting on say puppykicker.com your cut. That being said 8 outta 9 of our employees are on our FB friends list and they can puff puff pass all they want!

Hmm. I do find it a bit of an invasion. Is it okay for your prospective bosses to drive past your house and look in the windows before employing you?

(markjensen said @ #7.1)
Not peek inside your windows. But if you made a billboard in public, I think he would be within his rights to look at it. ;)

That's good way of saying it

I'm not gonna change nothing. If they don't like me for who I am, they don't need me and I don't need them. I do think there's a bit of discrimination though. I mean, so what if you have a picture of you having a few drinks with a buddy. Most people are responsible enough to not go to work plastered (or I would hope)

(Kreuger said @ #6)
I'm not gonna change nothing. If they don't like me for who I am, they don't need me and I don't need them. I do think there's a bit of discrimination though. I mean, so what if you have a picture of you having a few drinks with a buddy. Most people are responsible enough to not go to work plastered (or I would hope)

I agree.

My friend told me he was hired because his boss liked his facebook page, and browsed through his photos (a lot of drinking and joke pictures) and said he found him to have a good sense of humour, and would fit in with his other employees, but it was a landscaping job.

I hope no one here has any offensive pictures you don't want your future employer to see

I still don't find any advantage in use Facebook or not.

How many people can say "i obtain a nice job only because facebook" ?


(Magallanes said @ #2)
I still don't find any advantage in use Facebook or not.

How many people can say "i obtain a nice job only because facebook" ?

unless i'm missing something, people don't use facebook for getting a job.

as for the questions in the article, if you don't want someone to read something, dont stick it on a public place (ie the internet)!

My sister-in-law was an au pair looking to come to the US for a job. She spent 4 months depending on a webpage on the au pair site, nothing. She joined Facebook and joined an au pair group and two weeks later she's in Seattle working for a family.

Do you find this an invasion of personal privacy?


No, because its out there for the public to see.
Change your accout to private so only your friends and people you message (future friends?) can see your profile.