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Manage Your Online Reputation in Preparation for a Security Guard Job

More and more companies are using the Internet to get a feel for what a potential employee is really like.  They want to know the things that they can’t find out in interviews.  They want to know if you have a habit of calling in sick when you aren’t, if you do drugs, what your attitudes are like, and more.  And thanks to social networking sites they can now find this information without even asking you.

Your job is to manage that.  How?

First, make sure that any accounts on social networking sites are either private.  You can make your Facebook settings private by going into your Account Settings and your Privacy Settings.  Set everything to “Friends Only”.  This is a good start. You can make Twitter accounts private, too.  Set it up so that your account is locked and visible only to those that you approve to follow you.

This is not a foolproof way to manage your accounts though.  Unless you keep followers and friends on social networking site ONLY to those that you are close with and can absolutely trust, there is always the chance that the person whose friend request you accepted because they are best friends with your best friend might be a friend or a family member of the person who is considering hiring you.  If you have said anything negative it could come back and prevent you from getting a job.

The BEST way to manage your social media networks is to just not put anything out there that could prevent you from getting the job.  You should never make racial slurs or off-color jokes. You should never display pictures of yourself drinking or doing any illegal activity.  You should keep track of who is adding pictures of you.  If someone does add a picture of you that you think should not be online, ask them to remove it.

These same rules apply to comments you make in forums or on other sites and groups you join or pages you like.

Always be aware of what is being said about you online.  Use a Google Alert to see if your name comes up anywhere that you might not expect.  Employers are using the Internet to find out more about people they are considering hiring and it is your job to monitor your online reputation.  In our day and age, everyone has an online reputation, so make sure yours is a good one!

2 Responses to “Manage Your Online Reputation in Preparation for a Security Guard Job”

  1. Although this is a great post and I would not totally discount it, unless the LARGE security firms are doing this I don’t think that any of the small-medium sized firms are. The steps needed to process a new employee are long enough as it is that most agencies don’t want to add another layer.

    The way that most agencies see it is that as long as the officer is clean (drug and background) and has a pulse they can be hired. It’s unfortunate, but many agencies are just in the body game trying to fill schedules.

  2. I would agree with Courtney with the general sentiment that the smaller agencies may not be as keen on trying these particular methods to screen their applicants.

    However, what may be interesting is that it still could become an issue even with the smaller agencies because many of the ones we work with are using “candidate management” software to manage their applicants and built-in to quite a few of these systems are the “automated” ability to screen the applicants social accounts for certain keywords, etc.

    I don’t think it’s that big right now, but it will be interesting to see how this becomes more of an issue if more of the agencies that post jobs with us begin using these tools.

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