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May 24th, 2011 by Mythreyi Krishnan under Commentary

Should HR integrate Social Media Monitoring tools into screening processes?

Whether you’re looking for a job or want to keep the one you have,HR professionals would advise you to follow one golden rule when it comes to using Social Media: Never say anything online that you would be uncomfortable saying in person. Take note because a large portion of hiring managers take your online persona as seriously as they do your resume and credentials. In fact, many companies have formal policies in place that require HR managers to look for information online about employees.

Some companies have taken this to the next level by using social media monitoring tools to filter potential candidates as well as track current employees. The rationale behind this move is that employees are brand ambassadors. Thus, they are required to be responsible digital citizens who will uphold their own reputations as well their employers’. As for potential candidates, HR managers say that monitoring tools are a great way to screen and filter. For instance, something as simple as a spelling mistake could be considered a red flag. Listed below are the top reasons why employers disregard candidates during online screening

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On the other side, it is natural to wonder whether this is pushing things too far. Images of Big Brother come to mind when we imagine every facebook “like” or Linkedin status update being monitored and judged. Also, we should consider the fact that personal information, such as your political affiliation, religion or even looks, could be used in a discriminatory manner.

Overall, it is valid for the company to require employees to act appropriately on Social networks but they should make sure this information is used in a safe and confidential manner. Moreover, HR professionals should understand that monitoring should be only be used to understand the candidate better, it should not be relied upon entirely when hiring someone. As for employees and potential candidates, they should take care to be responsible online, avoid common pitfalls and always follow the golden rule.

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