Overseeing people2people’s social media, there’s rarely a dull moment. We’re often blown away by the glaring errors candidates make in their CVs and cover letters, as well as on their online – and usually very public – profiles. Here are four tragically real social media fails we've seen while dealing with some of Australia’s finest.
Having an insanely inappropriate Twitter account linked to the same email address you’re using for job applications
In a recent Twitter search for our email contacts, I was shocked by some of the content I found. Most accounts hadn’t been updated in months, or even years, which is perfectly fine if you’re applying for, say, an accounting role whose job description doesn’t include social media skills. But applying for a non-social media role definitely is not an excuse for some of the things I found. Obscenity riddled rants, cleavage shots all over Twitpic, and, my personal favourite, an oh-so lovely feed detailing an applicant’s jaw-dropping ‘sexcapades’. You may think we can’t see your Twitter account because you've used a pseudonym, but before you use a particular email address to apply for a job, stop to consider which social media accounts are linked to that email.
Throwing a tantrum on a company’s Facebook page
We’re a recruitment company, so we get it: people are angry at recruiters. For every person we get to congratulate on being chosen for a new job, we have to call ten people to tell them the bad news. But just because a company didn’t select you for a role does not make it okay to go off the rails, insulting the recruiters or the hiring company. Especially if it’s on a public forum, like social media. Believe me, telling us in a Facebook comment how horrendous we are isn't going to make us any more eager to find you a different job. Not to mention that unprofessional rant is visible to the rest of the world as well, so they won’t be jumping at the chance to hire you either.
Flying off the handle because we sent you an email
Spam is obnoxious, we agree. And many of your inboxes are inundated with unwanted communications from companies trying to get your business. There’s a simple solution for that: delete the email. Or, if you’re feeling extra bold, click the unsubscribe link, usually found at the very bottom of the email. For some reason, those easy tricks don’t stop a surprising number of people from responding with appalling rants about how much they despise spam. Keep in mind that deleting an email takes, oh, half a second. Unsubscribing from a mailing list takes, what? Five seconds at most? But writing an all caps essay about what a hideous person I am and providing me with unseemly suggestions of what I should do with myself just because I sent you one email? Now that takes dedication. I’d like to say we’ll be calling you with a gazillion $200k+ jobs to reward you for all your hard work, but, yeah, no.
Ranting about your job on social media
Remember that time social media profiles were 100% private? Yeah, neither do I. No matter how sneaky you are with your privacy settings or how much you trust your buddies, any information you share on social media is public. You may smugly pat yourself on the back for returning home after a long, exhausting day at work and posting a witty Facebook status about how much you hate your manager, but odds are that it will get back to your punchline of a boss. And you could easily lose your job. Your references aren't going to be pretty, either. Please, please, if you want to be employed, as we all do, take a minute to think before you go within ten metres of the internet.