If you’ve searched for a job online or responded to an email from a recruiter, the employer to whom you’re applying is going to assume you know something about the Internet. So other than perusing your resume and calling references to see if you’re a suitable candidate, they’ll also look on web pages to find out about you.
Before you send out your resume, you’d better clean up your online life as follows.
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Your Information Needs to be Consistent
- Make sure your employment information on your LinkedIn profiles, personal website, or third-party job sites match your resume and cover letter exactly. Double-check dates, names, addresses, facts and figures. The more consistent that all your descriptions are, the more credible your resume becomes.
Potentially Embarrassing Information Needs to be Eliminated
- Delete any questionable pictures and postings from your social pages, such as Facebook or Tumblr. While shots of your drunken revelries and rants about your previous employers amuse your friends, they make employers question your maturity and discretion.
Your Credit History Needs to be Stellar
- Order your free credit report from AnnualCreditReport.com. You’re entitled to one report free from each of the three major credit bureaus: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. Employers use this listing to determine your ability to handle money and responsibility. You can correct errors by calling the originating merchant and bureau. But you won’t be able to do anything about late payments, bankruptcies and foreclosures. Be prepared to explain them when the interviewer asks.
Google Yourself to Find Out What’s Out There
- Do a Google search to find any sites that mention you. Don’t forget to look under the Blogs, Discussion, New, Images and Videos options. Make sure that these third-party mentions match your LinkedIn and social media profiles, and your resume. If you find something incorrect or unflattering about yourself, don’t be afraid to ask the website owner to either change or remove it.
The Internet can be a huge help in any job search, or it can present problems that may keep you from your dream job. What happens is up to you. Be careful with your online presence.