Authenticity relates to originality, and when applied to an online professional profile, it means that the profile is really YOU, not a clone of someone else’s profile or their characteristics.
An authentic online professional profile can be developed in several ways, with LinkedIn being the most popular. Online platform – TARGETjobs, and creating your own blog, through Weebly or Tumblr, are other examples of ways to develop an authentic online professional profile.
There are many opportunities available to those who have their own online professional profile. Relating to the younger workforce, as companies ‘use social media to influence this generation about their company and get to know them’ (Tapscott, 2014), maintaining a professional online profile acts as a ‘professional networking tool’ (University of Southampton, 2012). This enables contacts to be made by the online profile user with firms, also receiving notifications about their job promotions, as companies use many online platforms in their recruitment efforts, which can be seen from the image below.
Therefore, maintaining your own online professional profile is invaluable. ‘Did you know that 94% of all recruiters use LinkedIn to search for candidates’? (Nyman, 2014) To support the importance of this claim, I have made a presentation showing social recruiting statistics from Jobvite (2014):
Furthermore, through creating my own online professional profile on ‘Volunteer Connect’, I received 3 invitations to work for companies, choosing to work for Age UK, as can be seen from the images below.
I have created a poster further displaying the opportunities available to those with an online professional profile.
However, there are challenges to developing an online professional profile. BBC (2013) highlight in their video that employers could be put off by candidates for including too much information on their profile, LinkedIn for example. Thus it is advised to include three points which accurately summarise your previous work, as this appeals to recruiters, potentially bringing contact from them.
Finally, social media could harm your professional online identity, seen through Twitter in this example.
‘The people I met were mostly unemployed, fired for their transgressions’ (Ronson, 2015). Alongside Justine, people who post offensive tweets are likely to have negative consequences, as 60% of employers screen the social media profiles of potential employees (Business News Daily, 2016), also monitoring those of their current workforce. Therefore, as Zadi Diaz explains in her video, below, you should keep your posts professional even when being personal.
Admin (2014) How blogging can help you get a job. Available at: <http://www.theemployable.com/index.php/2014/10/28/blogging-can-help-get-job/>. [Accessed 12 November 2016].
BBC (2013) Job hunting: How to promote yourself online. Available at: <http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25217962>. [Accessed 12 November 2016].
Business News Daily (2016) Social Screening: What Hiring Managers Look for On Social Media. Available at: <http://www.businessnewsdaily.com/2377-social-media-hiring.html>. [Accessed 29 October 2016].
Jobvite (2014) Social Recruiting Survey. Available at: <https://www.jobvite.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/Jobvite_SocialRecruiting_Survey2014.pdf>. [Accessed 12 November 2016].
Justine Sacco Tweet Picture Source. Available at: <https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=justine+sacco+tweet&espv=2&biw=1366&bih=638&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjY6syLyKbQAhXKWRoKHYUUDnQQ_AUIBygC#imgrc=Iubnm9RmlAiEEM%3A>. [Accessed 12 November 2016].
Nyman, N (2014) Using social media in your job search. Available at:
<http://moocs.southampton.ac.uk/websci/2014/03/13/ill-tweet-job-spec-snap-cv/>. [Accessed 12 November 2016].
Ronson, J (2015) How One Stupid Tweet Blew Up Justine Sacco’s Life. Available at: <http://www.nytimes.com/2015/02/15/magazine/how-one-stupid-tweet-ruined-justine-saccos-life.html?_r=2>. [Accessed 12 November 2016].
Tapscott, D (2014) Five ways talent management must change. Available at: <https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2014/10/don-tapscott-talent-management-millennials/>. [Accessed 12 November 2016].
University of Southampton (2012) Careers Service Video. Available at: <http://coursecast.soton.ac.uk/Panopto/Pages/Viewer.aspx?id=2caea677-5fec-4c1a-9ad3-70320d724655>. [Accessed 12 November 2016].
Zadi Diaz’ video – Available at: <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2UlcOX1fZW4&feature=youtu.be>. [Accessed 12 November 2016].