The Hidden Risk in Using Social Media as Your Resume

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve probably heard the mantra that social media is the new resume. 

The logic is that 96% of recruiters use social media for recruiting and, as a result, your social media presence is now your resume. 

How Recruiters Use Social Media

It’s true that recruiters use social media sites to find talent and look for information about you that they can’t get from interviews and reference checks.

However, when you get real about this, most recruiters use LinkedIn and niche professional networks to find talent. Because of this, you do need to be present on LinkedIn. Use other sites if you know they’ve helped colleagues get recruited.

Optimize LinkedIn

Build a keyword optimized, All-Star LinkedIn profile. Get 500 connections. Give the site five high-value minutes one or more times each week. That’s what you have to do to get good page rank in LinkedIn search results.

The Career Time Bomb in Social Media Usage

Beyond the networks mentioned above, recruiters check other social media sites, such as Facebook and Instagram, to learn about your behavior.

And here’s the rub: part of your behavior is how much time you spend on social media.

If you are all over social media, and it’s not about your job or business, then it’s easy for a viewer to see you don’t focus on your job. You’re not engaged.

No employer wants to fight social media for your time because, if you’re not engaged, you’re not productive.

Don’t Believe Everything You Read

You do not need to have an extensive social media presence to be found by employers. An optimized LinkedIn profile and some activity there will almost always do the trick.

You will know from colleagues if you should be on additional networks.

Give a meta-message that you’re too busy doing your job to fritter your time away on social media. THAT makes recruiters want to call you.

I write executive resumes and LinkedIn profiles. Save time. Get hired. Email me at 

Featured by SmartBrief
Image: Fotolia/Leigh Prather
Updated May 2017

© 2016 – 2017, Donna Svei. All rights reserved.


Comments 2

  1. That’s a really great point. Obviously there is a balance between being an active, responsible member of social media and giving the impression that you are prioritising that over your actual job. With a lot of orgs now having their own internal social platforms (such as Yammer) then being connected should be recognised positively – but agree this has limits.

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