One always wonders about the person who over-shares on Facebook, particularly when the over-sharing involves aspects of her personal life that she would presumably never want a potential employer to see.
Who would ever hire this person, one is inclined to wonder, if this person displays such a complete lack of online professional etiquette.
But what about companies that actually screen job applicants this way? It turns out they are finding it harder to attract top candidates, according to a new study from North Carolina State University.
Not only will candidates feel their privacy has been violated, they may even bring you to court.
"The recruiting and selection process is your first indication of how you’ll be treated by a prospective employer," says Will Stoughton, a Ph.D. student at NC State and lead author of a paper describing the research. "If elite job prospects feel their privacy has been compromised, it puts the hiring company at a competitive disadvantage."
While companies might want to rethink their approach to screening candidates, that doesn't mean they have to throw the baby out with the social media bathwater. Social networks, after all, is where the vast majority of hiring comes from.
Michael Ellsberg, author of The Education of Millionaires, explains that companies and individuals need to invest their energy to be more competitive in the informal job market. This is the place where 80 percent of hiring takes place.
The "formal job market," on the other hand, is where credentials tend to reign supreme: "Bachelor’s required; Master’s degree preferred." That only represents about 20 percent of hiring. In the vastly larger informal market, Ellsberg explains that the skill that is prized above all is the ability to be a great networker: "Somebody knows somebody, the boss needs a position filled, they ask their employees who would be good to fill this position, and the employees have referrals."
So it pays to know people. But remember, that is still no excuse to share pictures of the two of you at the frat party.
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