It is not exactly news that social media is playing a role in job seekers finding opportunities. For the most part, it can play a wonderful role in connecting potential employees to employers through avenues like Linkedin, and it is great for business. While these are great outlets and resources, social media has also had a big history of hurting people’s chance of landing a job. Too many people that are actively looking for jobs often forget to take the necessary precautions to keep their image safe on the internet. Luckily there are ways to remedy this problem as well, and it is important to do this before an intense attempt at job searching. With all of this taken care of, you can have a successful job hunt, without worrying about what will come up on you.

Google Yourself

This is where you want to start to check in on your social media presence. Most employers are already using the search engine to find more information about potential employees. It is only logical that you should also use this tactic to see your social footprint. While some results will show that you won’t have control over (if your name is on a site you don’t have access to), most of what will appear is your social media engagement. If anything unsavory is showing up, it is fine because you have complete control to your social accounts to hide or get rid of any information you don’t want showing. This is a really simple tool to use, and very necessary to know where you need to start getting rid of social media’s negative impact on your image.

Unlink Your Twitter

For the most part, tweeting your own opinions shouldn’t be too problematic, and you can protect your tweets on your account. What you do need to be weary of is linking your Twitter feed to other, searchable social accounts. Recently, Linkedin took away the feature of linking those two accounts, and with reason. Personal tweets showing up on professionally geared social accounts is not a good idea. When you are being searched on these platforms, employers don’t want to see personal rantings, but rather they want to see how you promote yourself as a professional. Just like you leave personal feelings, politics, values, and more at the door when you are at work, it is best to leave these at the door on professional websites as well. Most importantly, sometimes it is hard to remember that everything you tweet is showing up somewhere other than Twitter, and you want to have complete control over your messages.

Watch Who You Link To

While Linkedin has become a great professional tool for job seekers, you still need to take some precautions. In the early days on Linkedin, you had to select some sort of connection to the person you wanted to add to your network. It has since taken on a role like Facebook, where you can add anyone you come across. There are some benefits to having a large network, like getting possible job requests from employers on Linkedin. However, there is also the possibility of getting linked to someone that might not be a great connection, and turn people off. Like any social site, the chance of being spammed is a real threat by linking to people you don’t know, even on a professionally geared site like Linkedin.

So if you take all of these precautions, there is a good chance that you can cut back on your negative social media presence. It starts with finding the bad links with an initial search of yourself, and taking care of it. You also want to watch what social accounts you are linking, because you don’t want to cross professional and personal realms. If you take the time to see what kind of footprint you are leaving, you will be better prepared for job hunting. Make sure you look as favorably as you can online, and you can defeat the negative effects of social media.