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POLL: Have You Sanitized Your Social Media Accounts?

Employers and colleges are increasingly using social media to research applicants.

A CareerBuilder survey showed social media postings can cause an applicant not to be hired. Credit: Morguefile
A CareerBuilder survey showed social media postings can cause an applicant not to be hired. Credit: Morguefile
By Patch Editor Kristi Reed

Are your social media postings jeopardizing your career or education prospects?

Increasingly, employers and universities are using social media to learn more about applicants. A Kaplan survey recently revealed 31 percent of college admissions officers have visited an applicant's Facebook page or other social media page.

According to a report in the New York Times, 30 percent of the admissions officers had discovered information while perusing an applicant's social media activity that had negatively affected an applicant’s prospects. 

For job seekers, a respectable social media presence is even more critical.

A 2013 CareerBuilder survey showed 39 percent of companies use social networking sites to research job applicants. Of hiring managers who conduct such research, 43 percent said they had found information which caused them not to hire a candidate. That information most often involved inappropriate photos, alcohol or drug use, bad-mouthing a previous employer and poor communication skills.

Only 19 percent of hiring managers indicated finding information on social media that improved an applicant's hiring prospects.

Have you "sanitized" your social media accounts to make sure no potentially damaging posts (either by you or your social media connections) are available for potential employers to review? Has the prospect of having your social media activity scrutinized prompted you to change your usage habits? Let us know in the comments or vote in our online poll. Note: This is not a scientific poll. It is for entertainment purposes only.

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