What You Need to Know When Using Social Media to Screen Candidates (Part II)


We think social media is a great recruiting tool, but unfortunately it doesn’t always work out in our favor.

On Tuesday, we began talking about one area where we seem to run into trouble the most with social media: screening candidates.

However, don’t worry because while there are setbacks to using social media as a screening method, there are also plenty of ways you can use social media and get the results you want.

We’ve already talked about why you should avoid looking for a candidate’s negative characteristics via social media. To finish off our series, here are the rest of our tips on how to use social media when screening candidates. Take a look below:

Screen one, screen all:

  • If you are going to go through the trouble of screening one candidate, then you need to make sure that you screen them all. Nothing is worse than having two candidates who end up being hired, or during the process talk about their interviews and find out that one was screened and the other was not. Not only does it make you look bad and possibly lose their trust, but it can also make the employee (or worse, a potential candidate) second-guess their value to the company and become jaded.
  • Plus, if you feel the need to screen one candidate over the other, then perhaps that is already an indication that you doubt the candidate is right for the job.
  • To ensure that something like this doesn’t happen we suggest screening them all. You should also consider having a set of guidelines on what to look for, making the whole process much easier and headache free.

When it doubt, don’t:

What do you think about screening candidates using social media? Do you do it? What are the benefits and what are the setbacks? Let us know your thoughts by connecting with us on Facebook or Twitter. We’d love to hear from you!

photo credit: fisserman via photopin cc

What You Need to Know When Using Social Media to Screen Candidates (Part I)


If you take a look around our blog, it would be safe to assume that we are pretty big fans of using social media when it comes to recruiting, and just about everything else around the office.

However, one point that we would like to stress is that social media isn’t the end all be all of recruiting; in fact, in some cases using it can be to our disadvantage.

One area where this seems to ring true is in regards to screening candidates, which we outlined in our post on a study done by NC State University researchers. The study showed how misleading screening applicants can be when using social media platforms.

In case you missed it, here is a quick recap of their findings:

  • “People who posted references to drugs and alcohol were no less conscientious or no more conscientious than those who didn’t,” said Dr. Lisa Thompson, co-author of the study and professor of psychology at the university.
  • Will Stoughton, lead author and Ph.D student at the university, concluded that “companies are eliminating some conscientious job applicants based on erroneous assumptions regarding what social media behavior tells us about the applicants.”

Yes, using social media to screen candidates can be potentially misleading, but should we avoid using it at all? We don’t think so, which is why we thought we’d go through and give you a few tips on how to successfully use social media to screen candidates. Take a look below for our first tip:

Avoid the bad. Sure, it is important to look out for any big red flags that may indicate a candidate is wrong for the job, but as the research shows, it doesn’t always give us the results we want. If anything, going in with preconceived notions that the candidate has something wrong with them will just make it harder for you to make a fair call on hiring or not hiring the candidate. This is not only unfair to them, but a waste of company time and resources. So before you go ahead and start looking for photos of them partying or referencing something inappropriate, you might want to think twice.

On Thursday, we’ll finish up our post with a few more tips on how to successfully screen candidates. In the meantime, let us know your thoughts by connecting with us on Facebook or Twitter. We’d love to hear from you!

photo credit: Felixe via photopin cc