How Legal Job Seekers Can #Fail at Social Media
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How Legal Job Seekers Can #Fail at Social Media

Fail word on green chalkboard backgroundAs one of the leading legal recruitment firms in Vancouver, we meet thousands of job-seeking candidates every year. Even though we, as recruiters, don’t look at a candidate’s social media presence, it’s not uncommon for our clients to take a peek at a potential employee’s Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn profile. Here’s the bottom line: your online habits can have a large impact on your chances of getting a job.

Here’s a brief fictional story demonstrating this principle

Once upon a time, we meet with Linda. She is a rock star when it comes to her vast legal experience, outgoing attitude and polished demeanor. Her resume is sparkling and we send her on a number of client interviews with high hopes. We expect Linda to receive multiple job offers due to her excellent qualifications. 

Later that day, we meet with Alice. She is a bit of an introvert but has great legal experience; not as much as Linda but satisfactory nonetheless. As legal recruiters, it’s our job to prepare candidates for interviews so we give her a little coaching and send her to the same client interviews as Linda.  In all honesty, we expect Linda to come out on top but have high hopes for Alice as well.

Here’s where the story gets interesting

Each client calls us back after their interviews with Linda and Alice. Two of the four clients love Linda; however, two clients tell us that even though they loved Linda at first, they decided to go with Alice. Both clients took a peek at Linda and Alice’s social media presences and that was the deciding factor in their decision.

Here’s how Linda failed at social media

Even though Linda looked stunning in her Facebook profile picture, she was chugging back martinis on a beach in Mexico. Upon further digging, the client found multiple albums of Linda partying across Vancouver. The final nail in Linda’s coffin was a status update that stated, “bored at work.”  Linda’s biggest mistake was not adjusting her privacy settings accordingly. Furthermore, there’s a general rule when it comes to social media, don’t post anything you wouldn’t mind your grandmother seeing.

The client also took at look at Alice’s social media footprint. Her Facebook account was private; however, Facebook allows the public to see profile and cover photos. Alice had a smiling profile picture and her cover photo included a scenic shot of Vancouver. Upon further looking, the client found a professional LinkedIn profile that confirmed her qualifications and the client was even more impressed.

In the clients mind, the decision was easy. Even though Linda seemed like the perfect fit, Alice took the cake when it came to online presence. As recruiters, we aren’t allowed to make decisions based on social media; however, we can’t guarantee that our clients won’t look.

If your looking for a legal job in Vancouver, do yourself a favor and audit your social media profiles. Adjust your privacy settings and un-tag inappropriate pictures. If you need help fixing up your social media profiles, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

About Samantha Collier

Samantha Collier is a well-respected social media specialist in the Canadian legal realm. An experienced practitioner of online social networking, Samantha also has experience working in-house in business development for a national IP firm, but has worked in marketing and client acquisition for over 13 years.

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