It’s a fact: potential employers will Google you before they ever even think of offering you a job. What will they find when they do? Do you even know? If you want to land a job, you must take control of the search results that hiring managers find when they plug your name into a search engine and create a killer online brand.
Scrub Your Social Media Clean
Social media profiles are often at the top of any search result, so you need to start here. Twitter, Facebook and Instagram can lead to a plethora of juicy details about the type of person you are. Make sure that all of your personal profiles except LinkedIn are set to private so that searchers do not see your musings about the political process, what you ate for lunch, or your personal photos from that weekend in Vegas.
When it comes to LinkedIn, however, you want your profile to be public, and you want it to be polished. Use a professional headshot or a clear and professional-looking photo rather than a wedding photo or a snap from a party. Make sure that every field of your profile is completed and seek out recommendations from colleagues and former supervisors. You will also want to take time to join industry-related groups and contribute thoughtfully to the conversations there. Hiring managers often join those groups to “listen” to the conversations and spot new talent.
Buy A Domain Name
If possible, purchase your name as a domain (www.yourname.com). If someone already has your name as a domain, use a professional-sounding variation that includes your first and last name. You don’t have to build a complicated website, here. A professional headshot and a resume will do. Remember, keep this professional. This website is not the place to publish your 50 Shades fan fiction. You simply want to add another professional search result for your name.
Continuously Monitor Your Google Results
Search results are always changing, which means you have to continuously monitor your name to see how things are looking. Here is a quick checklist:
- Regularly check to make sure your social profiles are still private. Updates can sometimes change default settings.
- If someone has posted an unflattering picture or detail about you online, ask them to remove it. If they cannot take it down or will not take it down, always be up-front with potential employers about that information. Don’t wait for them to find out about it on their own.
- Don’t use your real name on message boards unless they are industry-related. Remember that everything you ever post online can be found, even if you do your best to keep it hidden.
- Set up a Google Alert for your name so that you will receive notifications any time new web content pops up with your name on it.
You never get a second chance to make a first online impression. Do your best to create an online brand that will make you proud any time a potential employer plugs your name into a Google search.
If you are a talented candidate seeking new opportunities to grow your career, the recruiters at Contemporary Staffing Solutions are ready to talk to you. Innovative and forward-thinking who are looking for top talent like you. Contact us today to learn more about the ways in which we can help you achieve your career goals.