Social Media Career Tips

By Helen Figge
08:22 AM

Social media efforts in the world have changed the way we communicate and often times are accessed before we even or ever meet.  We are often asked what employers look at with respect to searching a candidate and seeking the “best fit” for a given role.  Two of the hottest social media exchanges today and utilized for career searches are LinkedIn and Facebook.

The first, LinkedIn, is a professional networking where those interested in connecting, communicating and sharing ideas and thoughts come together to engage, exchange and communicate skills, career networks and a variety of other possibilities.  What are some helpful hints given to us by our eMentors for a LinkedIn account?  Keep it up to date, concise and reflective of your skills and attributes.  It is a great opportunity to show others who might not otherwise know you, all that you have done and can do in the work environment. Also, have a nice professional picture in the view box – it’s a nice first impression. Also, be selective who you link to; they basically have access to your “social rolodex” when you connect.

Facebook is another vehicle used for connecting via a social exchange.  Some issues arise more often with Facebook than LinkedIn because many times Facebook blurs the line between social, professional and personal attributes of a potential job seeker.  So what are some helpful hints for your Facebook account?  Keep your Facebook private, don’t share your password with employers and be cautious about “friending” co-workers or your manager. This could potentially create an indirect avenue for access.  Also, some may not be aware but as for viewing your Facebook profile, if your profile is public, anyone that is on Facebook can view your profile.  All that is needed would be to search for a name.  So, technically you don’t have to be a friend to view a Facebook profile in this instance.  What’s another helpful pearl when considering your Facebook account?  Well, it is wise not to discuss your work, colleagues or any trade secrets or otherwise things of confidence which might make vulnerable to your current employer or your potential employer.  Knowing your boundaries when working these social media outlets is of great benefit.  And I am not saying to close your Facebook account, but rather feel free to express yourself through your Facebook as you would want the world to view you.  Our HIMSS mentors always suggest to err on the side of a cautious and conservative approach. But in the end, you decide how you want the world to view you!

You can stand out and express yourself through these excellent and innovative approaches to socialization, but just remember that both of these venues represent you and often times people hear about you well before they meet you.  So, you want that first impression to be impactful and representing of you and what you are as a person and potential co-worker or employee.

Stay tuned for more information as it becomes available and remember...Be passionate about your career path and strive to make a difference and learn, learn…learn.  Technology is only the enabler; individuals will be the “transformers” of health IT in the years to come!