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Questionable online content disqualifies job candidates

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in Centerpiece,Hiring

social media and magnifying glassOver one-third of companies have disqualified a job candidate in the past year because of concerns about information found on public social media or an online search, according to a new Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) survey.

Candidates were disqualified for illegal activity and discrepancies with job applications, among other reasons. However, two out of five organizations (39%) also allowed those candidates to explain themselves.

Recruiting passive job candidates remains the top reason that organizations use social media for recruitment. Currently, 84% of organizations use social media to recruit and 9% plan to use it.

While most organizations use social media to post job advertisements (89%), three-quarters use it to contact candidates, and over two-thirds use it to search for passive or active job candidates. Companies that did not use social media for recruiting cited concerns about legal risk (e.g., discovering protected characteristics such as race, religion, age, etc.) and lack of HR staff time as the top reasons (both at 46%).

Positions employers seek to fill via social media

Nonmanagement, salaried employees - 87%

Management - 82%

Nonmanagement, hourly employees - 55%

Executive/upper management - 45%

Source: SHRM survey, January 2016

Read SHRM’s Using Social Media for Talent Acquisition survey.


To HR, these are the most influential social media platforms

The percentage of HR pros who rate a candidate’s presence as either very or somewhat important

LinkedIn   87%

Professional/association networking site   83%

Facebook   25%

Blog   23% 

Google+   19%

Twitter   18%

Source: SHRM survey, The Importance of Social Media for Recruiters and Job Seekers, September 2015

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