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Number Of Employers Passing On Applicants Due To Social Media Posts Continues To Rise, According To New CareerBuilder Survey

CHICAGO, June 26, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- More employers are turning to social networking sites to find additional information on potential candidates – and they're not entirely impressed with what they're seeing. A new survey from CareerBuilder found that 51 percent of employers who research job candidates on social media said they've found content that caused them to not hire the candidate, up from 43 percent last year and 34 percent in 2012.

Forty-three percent of employers use social networking sites to research job candidates, up from 39 percent last year and 36 percent in 2012. Additionally, 12 percent of employers don't currently research candidates on social media, but plan to start, according to the national survey, which was conducted online by Harris Poll on behalf of CareerBuilder from February 10 to March 4, 2014, and included a representative sample of 2,138 hiring managers and human resource professionals, and a representative sample 3,022 full-time, private sector workers across industries and company sizes.

Beyond Social NetworkingEmployers aren't limiting themselves to social networks when it comes to researching candidates' web presences. Forty-five percent of employers use search engines such as Google to research potential job candidates, with 20 percent saying they do so frequently or always. Additionally, 12 percent of employers say they've reviewed a potential job candidate's posts or comments on Glassdoor.com, Yelp.com or other ratings sites.

Helping or Hurting?So what are employers finding on social media that's prompting them to eliminate candidates from consideration? The most common reasons to pass on a candidate included:

  • Job candidate posted provocative or inappropriate photographs or information – 46 percent
  • Job candidate posted information about them drinking or using drugs – 41 percent
  • Job candidates bad-mouthed their previous company or fellow employee – 36 percent
  • Job candidate had poor communication skills – 32 percent
  • Job candidate had discriminatory comments related to race, gender, religion etc. – 28 percent
  • Job candidate lied about qualifications – 25 percent
  • Job candidate shared confidential information from previous employers – 24 percent
  • Job candidate was linked to criminal behavior – 22 percent
  • Job candidate's screen name was unprofessional – 21 percent
  • Job candidate lied about an absence – 13 percent

However, one third (33 percent) of employers who research candidates on social networking sites say they've found content that made them more likely to hire a candidate. What's more, nearly a quarter (23 percent) found content that directly led to them hiring the candidate, up from 19 percent last year.

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