Social Media Background Check for Employment: Pros & Cons

Social Media Background Check for Employment

Employers tend to verify the background of the candidates before hiring them. It provides them clarity of a person’s background and helps them find whether an employee has a past criminal record or not. Though there are many ways of verifying employees’ backgrounds online, conducting a social media background check for employment is a new norm nowadays. You might want your employees to have a social or online presence as an employer.

Promoting your services/products through their social media accounts becomes more accessible if they have a significant following on social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, etc. Also, you can recruit the right talent for your company through their social media circle.

Though social media checks by employers have increased in the recent past, it comes with these drawbacks:

  • There are plenty of fake accounts on social media channels. Therefore, verifying the authenticity of the details provided on a social media account can be quite a task. For example, A Facebook employment background check cannot be 100% trustworthy as millions of fake profiles are on it.
  • Sometimes, a deserving candidate might not be socially active. Therefore, judging a candidate’s credentials merely through their social media presence is not a wise thing to do.

Benefits of Social Media Background Check For Employment

Though there are a few drawbacks of using a social media background check for employment, it also comes with these benefits:

  • Employers using social media for background checks can find what others think or speak about a candidate. It might help them to determine whether a candidate is trustworthy or not.
  • As an employer, you might require creative candidates who can think and act impromptu. The candidates’ social media posts, comments, and reactions can help you determine whether they are creatively inclined or not.
  • Social media pre-employment screening can help you find hidden talents. Also, people tend to express their emotions and showcase their talent via their social media accounts. For example, a candidate may excel in elocution and social networking skills. As an employer, you may utilize these skills to the benefit of your organization whenever you get an opportunity.
  • A social media background check for employment can be used to determine whether a candidate communicates fluently or not.

How do employers find your social media?

As many professionals are active on social media platforms like LinkedIn, scanning their profiles can provide deep insights into their skills. For example, if any LinkedIn connections have given them a shoutout or accepted their proficiency in a particular skill, it would help you analyze their profile easily.

The details like name, contact number, etc., can be used to find their profiles online. Also, while hiring the employees, you can ask them to share their social media handles. This will help you to reach their profiles with ease.

Do employers look at social media before hiring a candidate? —this can be tricky. The kind of job skills an employer is looking for determines if social media background checks of job applicants are necessary. Also, the job requirements determine which social media platform is to be used for background verification.

For example, if you are hiring a social media manager or digital marketer for your organization, checking the social media accounts of candidates is a must to figure out whether they know how to use social media for marketing purposes. However, if you are hiring electrical engineers, scanning LinkedIn profiles will be a better option. It is because you will judge their credentials by checking what their previous employers had to say about them.

Is it legal for employers to check your Facebook?

As an employer, you can check the profile of any individual on Facebook. It is legal and within the federal and state privacy laws. However, many individuals tend to lock their profiles on Facebook these days. Therefore, a limited amount of information about their profile can be checked by strangers. In this case, you can ask a candidate to change their profile settings and make it open for public viewing.

Should employers look at social media before hiring?

If you are responsible for hiring the right talent for your organization, prioritize the need for the social media background check for employment based on specific cases. However, don’t think of it as the sole medium of verifying the authenticity of an individual. While an online presence is required for some job roles, most job requirements can do well without it.

Social media screening for employment can help you evaluate the credentials and skills of candidates. However, some things are best understood when you communicate with them directly. A social media background check for employment can be used to check the political, social, and general views. Therefore, don’t fret about using these requirements if your hiring process includes these requirements.

The best background check for social media accounts platforms is easily accessible online these days. GoodHire, TruthFinder, Instant Checkmate are valuable sites for social media background checks during employment.

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