Create a social media presence that won’t embarrass you if hiring managers come looking for it, experts say

Pulling the plug on social media accounts could be a bad idea

Keys to cleaning up your digital footprint

DETROIT – If you knew everything you post online would never go away -- would you still hit the post button? Even if you make a mistake, pulling the plug on your social media accounts is also a bad idea.

Experts said you need to be aware of what digital footprints you’re leaving behind. Your digital footprint is everything that makes a statement about who you are.

READ: More Americans stepping away from social media during pandemic for sake of mental health

Umesh Ramakrishnan runs a company that does social media searches of job candidates and social media is the first place a potential employer goes to check you out.

“The No. 1 thing I would ask your viewers to do is Google yourself and see what comes up,” Ramakrishnan said. “More than 50 percent of people don’t like what they find when they Google their own name.”

When you go looking for a new job the first place potential employers look is at your social media. Facebook has become an angry place, where it’s easy to find yourself in a heated debate with people you don’t even know. Don’t post things you might later regret.

“Debating and arguing is best left to doing that with people you know, in the physical world. Try not to do that in the digital world. It never goes away,” Ramakrishnan said.

You might be thinking the answer is to shut down all of your social media accounts and stay off the grid. But that could also be a mistake.

READ: Facebook says it will ban groups for ‘representing’ QAnon

“Not being out there in the digital world, especially post-COVID is a massive mistake,” Ramakrishnan said. “If I look for you and I can’t find you ... What are you hiding? That would make me go to the hiring manager and say, ‘You know what. Don’t take a chance.'”

You have to create a social media presence that won’t embarrass you when someone comes looking. Experts say a great rule to follow is to wait before you post, especially if you’re charged up.

About the Authors:

Kayla is a Web Producer for ClickOnDetroit. Before she joined the team in 2018 she worked at WILX in Lansing as a digital producer.