Whether you’re applying for a nanny job, housekeeping job or pet care job your interaction with potential employers via Care.com may not be the only way an employer forms an impression of you.
Many employers Google potential hires before inviting them to interview, as a way of understanding more about the individual and their online reputation. It’s essential that anything that comes up in association with your name – your Facebook posts, Twitter images and Tumblr rants – portray you in a positive light.
Before you start, Google your email address, any usernames you may have and your name and location. Be aware of any unprofessional listings and be sure to take action against any that do come up.
Here are eight useful tips for cleaning up your online reputation.
1. Get Editing & Deleting
Take a look at all of your online profiles, pages and accounts. What do they say about you? Go through each site and clean up your bio, comments, posts and any other text that families might find unprofessional. Proofread your posts to make sure there aren’t any typos.
2. Join Online Professionals
One of the most useful resources job seekers fail to utilize is LinkedIn. Create a profile on the site, and write a brief ‘About Me’ and include details on all of your amazing employment experience and skills. Then connect with other people in your area and industry. Seeing this additional proof that you take your job seriously will help convince families that you’re the right person to hire.
3. Be Ruthless With Your Photos
While you’re viewing all those profiles and starting new ones, don’t forget to look at the images and photographs too. Any pictures where you are drinking, dressed inappropriately or engaging in behaviour that is unprofessional should be removed. Also double check whether or not any friends have tagged you in these types of pictures. If so, ask them to remove the picture, or untag yourself. And although you can set privacy settings to block these images, potential employers can often still find them — it’s better to be safe than jobless!
4. Show Your Positive Side
You may think it was fun to rant about your old family in that blog post, but it may make a new family think twice about hiring you. There’s no faster way to guarantee you won’t get a job than to speak ill of a former employer — instead focus on the positive aspects of your life, such as when you have volunteered.
5. Cross Reference
Potential employers will look in several places to glean information about candidates. Cross check your Care.com profile, your profiles on social media sites and your resume. You want to make sure that anything that is on your profiles is also in your resume and vice versa, and it’s all up to date.
6. Show an Interest
One of the benefits of social media is that you can show more facets of your personality than you can with a typical paper resume. Use social media sites to show how much you enjoy caring for children, watching the elderly or being a pet caregiver. Follow experts in your field, comment on pertinent news and post relevant articles and images.
7. Make a New Email
Yes, the email firstname.lastname@example.org worked fine when you were younger, but now that you’re a professional care provider and looking for jobs, it doesn’t give the right message. Take a look at any email addresses, Twitter handles, Skype names, user names, etc. that a family might come into contact with. If something isn’t the best fit, update to a new one.
8. Clean Up Comments & Add Recommendations
While all of these elements are crucial, the most important parts of your online reputation are recommendations and third-party opinions. Ask your social media followers, friends and previous employers to leave positive messages on your blog or provide recommendations on LinkedIn.
Used correctly, social media and online sites can be an excellent resource for improving your job search. You don’t want to miss out on an amazing senior care job or childcare position because you just had to share that picture of you and your best friend back at college.