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Job Searching with Social Media


Why add social media as a job search strategy? According to a recent Jobvite survey, over 90 percent(!) of U.S. companies used social media to find talent -- and according to NACE's Student Survey only 41 percent of recent college grads are using social media to look for a job.

On top of connecting with old friends and unearthing juicy updates, social media can be used to advance your career. In particular, the online tool can be leveraged to find jobs and co-op/internships. With the recent explosion of social media, many companies use Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, and blogs in their process of finding new talent. Likewise, job seekers can use social media to highlight their skills and stand out from other candidates.

Digital Dirt

The Good:
68% of employers have HIRED a candidate based on what they saw about them online

Where employers find you:
65% of employers do an online back­ground check of their candidates
91% of employers check social media


The Bad:
69% of employers have REJECTED a candidate based on what they saw about them online

Where they check the most:
LinkedIn and Google - 82%
Facebook - 76%
Twitter - 53%
Other - 8%


The Ugly:
8% of companies have fired employees from social media findings



See what dirt you find on yourself with this check list:

  • Google your name with your address (hometown), click web search AND images
  • Google your name with RIT or Rochester
  • Search on (include social media usernames). Go to each social media platform FROM PeekYou and see what the front pages show (Look at your recent tagged or uploaded pictures)


Privacy Settings

You still have control over what people see, use that power!
These are things you can do for your private accounts


  • Make photos/account only viewable to friends that you accept
  • Make individual pictures only viewable to certain friends (once again, groups)
  • Review your activity log and edit it to the way you want it to be presented
  • Make search engines not link to your account


  • Approve who follows you
  • Only allow certain people to view your tweets (this eliminates the “Retweet” option)
  • Don’t allow people to find you via email or “people you may know” feed


  • Control who sees your activity and what shows up on your feed
  • Control who can see your connections
  • Don’t allow LinkedIn to tell when you’re viewing others’ profiles

Note: You should have more lenient privacy settings for professional accounts because you want people to see those

Clean Up

The damage has been done, but you can still help yourself out...

  • Unlike unwanted Facebook/LinkedIn pages and groups that you don’t want to associate with (anymore)
  • Untag inappropriate images or delete them. If they got a lot of likes, they’ll show up on web searches first, regardless of when they were posted
  • Lock statuses/tweets from certain people
    -Make Facebook friend groups so you can organize who you want viewing certain things (make a group for family, work, school, etc.)
  • Make separate professional and personal accounts
    -Use settings to make personal accounts private and professional accounts public

Keeping clean:

Now that you’ve cleaned your accounts up, it’s time to keep it that way...

  • Stay positive online; don’t complain or argue on the internet
  • Respond/comment/like/tweet/etc. in a way that shows you’re appropriately engaging and a good listener online; don’t be a difficult, sarcastic or inappropriate
  • Make sure you post/tweet from the right account. Posting from the wrong account happens more often than you’d think
  • Don’t swear or be vulgar; it may be hard, but try and be polite
  • is a site to help you promote the online presence that you desire; it’s good to do once you’ve cleaned up your social media
  • Limit cross-profile sharing. Pay close attention to what profiles you post to. Many social accounts, such as Pinterest and Instagram, allow you to post to Facebook or Twitter, as well.

Resources Entry Level Job Seeker, Google Thyself! Your Twitter Feed Could Get, or Lose, You the Job

Check out our Digital Dirt events on campus, come in during walk-in hours and follow us on Twitter (@RITCareers) to look for our #DigitalDirt campaigns Entry Level Job Seeker, Google Thyself!


LinkedIn is the Facebook for professionals. It is a place to connect and network with individuals in your profession. After a job interview, you can follow recruiters and professionals. Also, you can learn about professionals who work at your desired company. It is important to complete your LinkedIn profile 100 percent. This allows LinkedIn to rank your profile higher in search results, allowing you to be more visibility to recruiters.

Use the advanced search feature under Jobs to filter openings by company, experience level (includes internships, entry level), location, and more. Check out because LinkedIn funnels entry level jobs to this portal.

"Alumni Tool" -- One of the very best features of LinkedIn is your ability to easily identify and connect with alumni in LinkedIn. Visit any University LinkedIn page and filter results from there. The Rochester Institute University page gives you the opportunity to gain career insights on over 100,000 alumni. Filter by where they live, where they work, what they do, what they studied, what they are skilled at and how you are connected. Can you see how this can help build your network of contacts that woudl be meaningful to you? It is a great tool to learn about career paths, or what companies hire RIT alumni, find a contact in a city you plan to move too -- the list can go on!

Be sure to join RIT Career Services LinkedIn group which includes students, alumni, industry people. Don't overlook the RIT Alumni Group -- you immediately will grow your connections with professionals working at companies all over the country (and world).

Getting to Know LinkedIn

LinkedIn for Students Overview Video:

Top 5 Profile To-Do's video:

Top 5 Profile Tips:

  • Fill in your employment history.Keep your network informed about your past positions and professional accomplishments.
  • Add your education.Enter your school and LinkedIn can help you re-connect with your classmates and meet fellow alumni.
  • Add a photo.Help people remember you by adding a professional-looking photo to your pro!le. People never forget a face.
  • Add at least 3 skills. Be found in searches. Enter keywords to represent your industry and function, e.g., IT, marketing, healthcare, etc.
  • Create your own vanity URL. Customize your pro!le URL that appears in search results. Share with colleagues and add to signatures and business cards.

Read this article on How to Send LinkedIn Invitation and Messages

LinkedIn University

Best way to get to know LinkedIn and all it can do for you is to go directly to the source -- check out LinkedIn For Students! There you will find resources about the benefits of a LinkedIn profile and presence, and to help you get started.

Topics include Building a Great Student Profile, Using LinkedIn to Find a Job or Internship, How to Network on LinkedIn Tailoring Your LinkedIn Profile to Your Goals, How to Communicate Effectively on LinkedIn, Buliding Your Personal Professional Brand, Using the Alumni Tool to Explore Career Paths.


On Twitter, follow industry companies and leaders; engage in interactions with them. Interact through retweeting, favoriting posts, and responding to career discussions. Once you have established a relationship, tweet about your job search, professional achievements, and passion for the field. This is a powerful strategy to market yourself and attract company recruiters. Keep your tweets professional, concise, and eye-catching.

There are a number of Twitter accounts like Tweet My Jobs that are great sources of job openings. Find one that suits your needs.

Recommendations for Using Hashtags to Find Jobs

(From the NACE Spotlight for Career Services Professionals article)

As you probably know, the # symbol, called a hashtag, is used to mark a keyword or topic in a tweet. Using hashtags for the job search is a great way to get a tweet to appear in search results or a discussion that many are watching. Try #jobsearch

Here are some examples of hashtags for job searching:

#resume—Use the hashtag #resume with a description of yourself, or a link to your resume.

#tweetmyjobs— #tweetmyjobs has been tagged nearly a million times, so use it! You can also use TweetMyJobs ( to receive new job openings when they are available. This is similar to a traditional job board, but culls the information and listings that are found on Twitter.

Job Listings—Find general job advice and lots of listings through hashtags like #jobs, #recruiting, #jobadvice, #jobposting, #jobhunt, and #jobsearch. To narrow it down, though, seek out more specific hashtags, such as or #prjobs or #salesjobs. You can even search for hashtags just by college major, such as #biology or #accounting, and job listings as well as conversations relevant to the topic may appear.

Industry Conferences—Most conferences these days have their own hashtags. When a relevant industry conference is approaching, get active with attendees using the hashtag. Whether you are attending the conference or not, you can contribute to the conversation. Many conferences also have live streams, so it's as if one is attending anyway! You can “live tweet,” which means to tweet while at the event. You can do this at panels and speeches you are attending or interested in, and connect with other tweeters along the way. By using Twitter for networking within an industry, you can increase your chances of getting hired down the road.

Our Twitter Accounts

Follow RIT Career Services on Twitter. Get tips or connect with recruiters and industry folks and share your experiences using #RITCF. The RIT Creative Industry Day event @RIT_Creativity uses Twitter too. Follow RIT Diversity Careers for updates and information on that topic.


More often than not, before a company makes a job offer, they’ll do the obligatory online search of your name. Aim for an online presence that highlights your achievements and career passions. A search on Google should reveal things like your resume, LinkedIn profile, and Facebook page. Be most aware of your Facebook presence. Filter embarrassing photos, inappropriate comments, and senseless apps (e.g. Love Quotes). Even more, use your Facebook page to give yourself an advantage. Make your profile picture a clean image of yourself; link tweets and blogging to Facebook.

RIT Office of Career Services and Co-op is on Facebook too.


Blogging allows you to connect with a community and exchange information and feedback. Develop a blog that details your career interests. Create a pictorial blog of your designs with interspersing text. Also, show your knowledge and understanding by discussing advances and trends. Create instructions and tutorials on relevant products and services; talk about new product releases. In addition, use your blog to share feedback and reviews. If a professor or colleague gives your work a good review, post it on your blog. This is a great way to draw attention to your strengths, without sounding forceful.

Read through RIT Career Matters posts on topics related to careers and job search strategies.