Social Media sites give a glimpse of who you are outside the confines of your resume or cover letter or an interview. In a survey conducted by, to put social media job seeking into perspective, it was found that about two out of every five companies polled browse your social media profiles to evaluate your character and personality. And some even based their hiring decisions on what they found.

The hiring managers aren’t screening your social media profiles to dig up just only dirt. They’re also looking for positive information about you to hire you. So, blending in is not prudent. Because the pool of candidates is vastly competitive, hiring managers will subject your resume, past professional experiences and social presence to stringent screening, so standing out is key.

Though each social network has its own unique characteristic and best practices, the importance of a riveting social media profile is common to all of them. There are a number of ways you can use this to your advantage and increase your chances of getting hired.

In some cases, the employer hired because he/she got a good feel of the candidate’s personality from the profile or because the profile conveyed a professional image or because the job seeker is creative, well rounded or has great communicative skills.

Begin with investing time in building a complete and relevant profile. Try to think through the eyes of the recruiter as no one likes to seek a partial resume or worse big empty space. Post a professional headshot, the one your mother will be proud to look at. And update your profile frequently as and when you are promoted or has scored a career relevant success.

Doesn’t just be a lurker on the social media by only posting a profile and checking your news feed. Engage in a meaningful way. You need to give to the social networking communities, participate in discussions, share expertise or point to interesting content. Work it and don’t be timid.

It is predicted that companies will doing more screening and recruiting of job candidates on social media sites, so don’t be surprised if you’re expected to engage in a preliminary interview via an instant message chat on Facebook or Twitter.

As social media recruiting offers so many advantages to employers and job seekers, so it’s here to stay. Even if you’re not looking for work now, you’ll be ahead of the game if you start crafting your image to appeal to those for whom you would like to work in the future.