Last week we saw a major social media failcome from a candidate who had just interviewed for a job. She tweeted that she had interviewed using HireVue and that she thought it went well and really needed the job. Her Twitter profile picture was a “selfie” of her giving the bird.

Are you serious? The selfie is bad enough but a selfie, giving the bird? Really? We are assuming she has no idea her photo is public or that her Twitter profile can be easily searched. To be fair, most people don’t think a company is going to search online for candidates on social media but they do; almost always. So, before you apply for that perfect job – make sure you clean up your “social” act.

Candidates aren’t theonly ones having social media fails. Check out this list of epic company social media failures in 2013 by BusinessInsider.

Profile Photos.

Using selfies? We’d rather you not, but if you must – get rid of the duck face, middle finger, party scenes, etc. Also, check your surroundings.A messy background is not an ideal photo for your potential employer to look at.

A great profile photo can be a photo with your friends or family, one of yourself with a nice background, preferably taken by someone else. Also, make sure you look professional in the photo. This doesn’t mean you need to be in business attire but it does mean you need to have your hair done and wear conservative clothing.

Don’t Be Negative on Social.

You never know what “friend of a friend” could be tied to your potential employer. What you say on social media can come back to bite you in the behind; tread lightly. Once a comment is read, it cannot be taken back. We suggest practicing kindness in all interactions.

Get on LinkedIn.

If you are not on LinkedIn, sign up today. LinkedIn is a huge advantage for candidates and it’s free. It’s one of the first places hiring managers and recruiters search for candidates. Having a detailed, thorough profile, with lots of recommendations, exceptional skills and experience, is a great way to get picked for an open position in your specific industry.

LinkedIn can also connect you to other professionals in your industry and get you noticed. Being on LinkedIn may not be a deal breaker but it shows you care about growing your professional network.

Check Your Privacy Settings.

Social media can be tricky with their privacy settings. Make sure you read through every setting and what it can and cannot filter for you. Like we said before, profile pictures are public regardless of your profile page being private or public, so be careful with the content you post and make sure you understand how your posts are viewed.

Social media can be your greatest asset or your biggestfailure.

So when on the job hunt – be smart, update your settings and show off your best self.

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