Clean Up Your Social Media Before Submitting Resumes

John Krautzel
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Social media websites can enhance your job search efforts. These websites are especially beneficial to employers who use them to vet candidates before making hiring decisions. It's a good idea to thoroughly clean up your social profiles before submitting your resume. Here are some tips for creating a more professional social media presence.

Set Profiles to Private

Change your settings on your social media accounts to Private to have better control over who sees your pages. When your accounts are set to private, you can take your time and do a thorough examination of your posts and comments without worrying about employers or other outsiders.

Edit Typos and Unreadable Posts

Get rid of social media posts that have weird spellings and abbreviations. Try to appear educated and articulate in your posts. Consider taking a screenshot of your fun posts, saving them to your hard drive and then deleting them. Making more of your posts relevant to your professional life can enhance your brand and give you an advantage over other candidates.

Remove Inflammatory Content

Get rid of any posts that include expletive-filled rants and profanity. These posts might make you appear ill-mannered, careless and unprofessional. It's fine to vent your frustrations, but do so in a way that wouldn't turn off a potential employer.

Use Appropriate Photos

Use appropriate photos to tell your story on social media. Add a professional head shot to your LinkedIn profile. Show photos you spending time at work volunteering. Consider including images of the annual summer picnic sponsored by your employer or pictures taken at a conference or networking event.

Express Relevant Opinions Carefully

There are plenty of opinionated people on social media. If you weigh in on a controversial subject, do so with caution. Rather than expressing an emotional opinion, react with facts and information. Take a stand by making an intelligent post rather than a controversial one. If you feel an emotional connection to a topic and take a stand without fully realizing the entire scope of the situation, you may come off as sounding foolish or uninformed. If you already commented on a controversial topic, consider deleting the post if it paints you in an unprofessional light.

Communicate Well

Companies investigate your online presence to see how you communicate with others and showcase your personal interests. Demonstrating that you carry yourself with aplomb and integrity goes a long way. Having a robust yet professional online presence can enhance your personal brand and boost your chances of impressing potential employers.

Social media profiles can be a great complement to your resume. Having a great presence on social networks can help you stand out from other candidates and connect with potential employers and co-workers.

Photo courtesy of mkhmarketing at


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  • Nancy Anderson
    Nancy Anderson

    @Chuck S. thanks for your comment. Sometimes I think it's better not to have an online presence! Saves you from having to worry about what is being posted to your Facebook account or any other social media sites. But then, again, hiring companies do take the time to search out your social media sites and frown upon it if you don't have any. So it's kind of a catch-22 and the decision regarding having or not having social media presence is totally up to you!

  • Chuck S.
    Chuck S.

    I never have read so much about nothing at all to do with me and my online profile or the need for me to have an online presence for the purpose of 'enhancing' my resume!! I tried to get this idea pounded in and out of the skull several times in the past 10 years and what I see is a better outcome if having no presence BUT my resume to deal with landing an interview, you know?? I don't have to clean, or spruce up, or take out the garbage on my Face page or not-share personal photos of my trip to Cancuun with my ex-boyfriend / girlfriend or stepsister under 18 yrs.

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