Whether you are a social media enthusiast or simply interested in it, you should be aware of the importance of screening your social media profiles. Many companies, such as LinkedIn, have made it a point to be transparent about their screening procedures. In this article, you will learn some tips to help you avoid failure when screening your profiles.
Discriminatory information is seen and possibly used
Using social media to screen prospective hires is a good idea, but there is no need to go overboard. Limiting the amount of information you share with prospective employees is essential. The key is to find out how much information about your application is being shared in the first place, and then take the appropriate measures to restrict access.
An excellent social media screening program should be designed to meet industry best practices and be supervised by an HR specialist. This ensures that the company’s policies and procedures are followed and that employees aren’t tempted to use social media to their advantage. For example, limiting the number of friends requests prospective employees make. It is also wise to limit the number of social media accounts opened on company time to prevent employees from leaking company secrets and other sensitive information. This is particularly important if you are screening candidates over the phone.
One of the most effective ways to do this is to implement a social media screening program throughout the contract period. This will allow you to keep an eye out for a potential problem and limit the number of candidates you are considering for hire. In addition, the best social media screening programs also provide incentives to employees who keep their accounts current, such as discounts on goods and services.
Non-job-related and outside-of-work-hours content
Whether you’re trying to weed out the n’s at your next business meeting or a human resource professional looking for a promotion, it’s a good idea to know what you’re looking for and what you don’t. You’ll be surprised to find that the most challenging of employees will be willing to make a few concessions for the good of the company. A recent survey found that 54 percent of employers currently use social media to screen candidates. But, of course, many of these firms aren’t happy with the results. Fortunately, there are a few best practices to avoid blunders, such as the following: a.
The science behind the screening
Among the various methods employers can use in the selection process, social media screening is a relatively low-cost method that allows employers to review readily available information about applicants. It is also a valuable tool for avoiding discrimination. However, there are still questions about its fairness and the potential harm that may be caused by social media screening.
Social media screening is often performed in secret, causing applicants to be unaware that their profiles have been screened. This may be a problem, especially if the applicant needs to consent. In addition, the information provided may be inaccurate.
Social media screening may also be used to reject candidates for non-job-related reasons. For example, some screeners may reject candidates for free speech or for using illegal drugs. Therefore, assessing applicants’ reactions to social media screening is essential, as their reaction can affect their commitment and organizational outcomes.
While screening online sources can reduce the risk of criminal employee behavior, it raises legal and ethical concerns. In addition, social media assessment intrudes into areas of privacy not relevant to the application process. As a result, it can lead to potential lawsuits for invasion of privacy.
Screeners may also screen out applicants for non-job-related reasons, such as for high-risk hobbies. They may also refuse candidates who have revealed medical conditions, such as drug or alcohol use.
Checking your profiles
Looking at a job applicant’s social media accounts is a great way to gain insight into their online behaviors and habits. However, employers should be careful about the accuracy of the information they receive.
Social media screening can be an effective tool to minimize employee turnover and termination. The first step in implementing a screening policy is establishing who will conduct the screening, when it occurs, and what information will be obtained. For example, the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) requires that the employer obtain the candidate’s permission before conducting a background check. In addition, state laws can limit an employer’s access to nonpublic information.
In addition to privacy laws, an employer can face negligent hiring and retention claims if the hiring decision is made based on an employee’s social media activities. Screening is used to prevent a potential employee from engaging in risky or inappropriate behavior. However, the accuracy of the information can be challenging to determine. The FCRA requires that companies that specialize in social media screening provide the information they have received fairly and accurately. The screening report should be retained on file for at least one year and two years for federal contractors.
Some states also prohibit employers from asking for an applicant’s social media account password or logging in. While screening can be an effective tool to reduce employee turnover, it can also be costly.