Career Planning: Building Your Online Profile

Girl at computer

If you are unemployed or are looking for a change, you are likely doing your research on prospective employers. Well, once you apply, they may turn around and do some research on you through social networks and the Internet. Will you be portrayed how you think you should be?

Here are some ways to make sure that your online profile is consistent with your application:
• Setup Google Alerts on yourself. On http://www.google.com/alerts, set up keywords, determine which result types, how often and how many results you want and which email to have alerts delivered. Alerts help make you aware when new articles and content posts on the web with the keywords you choose. This may allow you to identify and correct any inaccurate information about yourself, although remember there are probably millions of other people named “John Smith” who you may receive alerts about too.
• If you have social media profiles on sites like Facebook and Twitter, make sure you are presenting yourself how you would want to be perceived by a recruiter. Are your pictures and the comments on your page appropriate for the type of jobs you are applying for? If not, you may want to clean up your pages as best you can and adjust your privacy settings to help reduce the ability for recruiters to see your information.
• Make sure your LinkedIn profile is up-to-date with your skills and reflects highlights from your resume. Being on LinkedIn helps you gain exposure to many recruiters and can effectively demonstrate your professionalism if you maintain your profile and build your network on the site.