As the Internet has become a bigger part of everyone's life, it has emerged as a premier tool for job hunting. When you need a job, it makes sense to apply for openings online and to check out the online job boards. At the same time, finding a job has become a lot more complex than just checking out some online classified ads. With so much information available online, you now have to be able to proactively manage your reputation as well.
Protect Your Reputation
When you are in the job market, it is important to make sure that you go out and actively search for information about yourself online. Search for your name on the major search engines and see what turns up. There's a good chance that some of your social networking profiles will appear. Because of the availability of social networking profiles, it's important to make sure that you protect your reputation online and get rid of anything on your profiles that could cost you a job.
For example, those pictures of you and your friends partying at the club may not be good to show off on Facebook when you're looking for a corporate job. You may want to limit who can see your social networking profiles as well, by making them private.
Besides social networking profiles, you should also look for any other information that is available online about you. For example, if you had a college paper published online, you need to make sure that it shows off your true skills and is a good reputation of you. If not, you might want to ask your college professor to take it down off of the site. If you wrote any articles or publish any other kind of content online, make sure that it is appropriate for your potential employers.
If you come across any negative comments about you or any other negative information, see about getting it removed. Sometimes, you may not be able to get the content removed from the website that it is located on.
If you can't get rid of the bad content, you should do your best to get some good content about you ranking higher in the search engines. For example, registering a domain that is your name will usually get a high spot in the rankings. You can create your own portfolio site that shows off your accomplishments and your resume for potential employers.
In addition to creating your own website, you should also look at setting up profiles on all of the major social networks. For instance, you may want to set up a file on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Tumblr, Google+ and MySpace, among others. Most of these sites have a very good reputation with the search engines, and they'll usually rank pretty high when someone searches for your name. If something negative is showing up about you in the first page of Google, setting up these other accounts can help you push it down to the second page or further.
With so much information out there about you, it will be nearly impossible to completely eliminate all of the information that you don't like about yourself. However, you can still try to do your best to get as much positive information as possible about you at the top of the search engines.
If you can pull it off, you'll significantly improve your chances of getting hired by an employer in today's market. You still need to be active in searching for jobs and applying for them online and in person as well. Managing your reputation is just a part of the puzzle.