Here’s What Employers Are Looking at When They Google You

Your resume is solid, your cover letter is edited, and you’re the perfect fit for the job — but there’s one aspect of being hired that you may have forgotten about. It’s true that while looking for candidates to fill a position, some employers may choose to give your name a quick search in Google. And while you may not have anything too embarrassing on the internet, it’s still important to note what they may be taking a look at.

Your photo (especially on your LinkedIn)

logo for LinkedIn
LinkedIn on a computer screen | Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

LinkedIn may just seem like a slightly more professional version of Facebook, but it’s wise to take it seriously. Glassdoor explains 96% of recruiters actually use LinkedIn to search for the perfect candidate. And the first thing they’re seeing is your photo.

Take note of what you’re wearing in your photo, where you are, how you’re presenting yourself, and the first impression you’re likely to give. Is it a well-lit, well-shot photograph that you’re proud to put forward? If not, you may want to rethink which one you’ve chosen, especially on LinkedIn.

If your personality fits with their culture

Your online presence paints a larger picture of you than you think. Your qualifications are important, of course — but it’s also vital to the employer that you’ll culturally fit in with the company. For this reason, they’re taking note of your personality when they visit your personal website or LinkedIn.

Here’s another good reason to have all aspects of your LinkedIn filled out to the best of your ability. Through your writing, you can add personal flair and showcase who you really are while highlighting your achievements.

Your personal website or portfolio

You may suspect some employers are going to look deep into the internet to learn about you and your past habits, but that’s probably not the case. Instead, they’re much more likely to pay attention to any official website or online portfolios of yours that are easy to find through a quick Google search. The Huffington Post explains it’s a huge bonus when potential employers can google you and find immediately, with all of your credentials easily found in one space.

On your personal website, make sure you have professional photos of yourself, a page explaining who you are, your resume, reference letters, and career accomplishments you’re most proud of. Make it clean, polished, and easy to read while adding in personal touches to make you stand out.

How big your digital footprint is

Employer conducting a job interview
Employer conducting a job interview | Fizkes/iStock/Getty Images

You may be tempted to delete all of your social media out of fear if you’re looking for a job, but that can actually harm you in the long run. Employers want to be able to find your credentials online and see what your personality is like before you’re interviewed.

The Huffington Post notes you should employ some strategy in crafting your digital persona if you’re looking for work. Having a LinkedIn profile and a website of your own with matching credentials is a good first step.

Proof you’ve accomplished what your resume says you have

You may have some impressive credentials under your belt, and a potential employer would love to confirm them with a quick Google search. The Huffington Post notes some people will embellish smaller victories to make them seem better fit for the role, which isn’t something employers want to see. Instead, make sure you’re being completely transparent on your resume — and then see if you can reaffirm the facts with your online presence. This could be just the edge you need over the rest of the competition.

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