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A survey by online job site 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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