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Do you tweet and use Facebook? Have you got a LinkedIn page? Of course — just about everyone uses social media these days, and according to a new survey, companies take these things into account when assessing job candidates.

In a poll of study conducted by Challenger Gray & Christmas Inc., more than 60 percent of human resources directors said they look at applicants’ social media histories when making hiring decisions. While only 6 percent of respondents said these finding play a major role in the decision-making process, it’s not a bad idea to examine your online habits and make sure you’re sending possible employers the right message.

How do you do it? In a post for the Tampa Bay Business Journal, Jo-Lynn Brown offers “7 Ways to Use Social Media in Your Job Search.” Scroll down to read her expert tips.

1. Network, Network, Network — Everyone’s always talking about the importance of networking, and it’s just as vital online as it is in the real world. Use LinkedIn and Twitter to establish professional networks. “Even in the digital world,” Brown writes, “sometimes it’s not what you know, but who you know.”

2. Build a Brand — The idea here is to sell yourself, and one way you can do it is by creating a blog where you comment on industry trends.

3. Be Involved — Once you’re part of an online community, you want to post and tweet frequently. Active users look better, Brown writes.

4. Don’t Post Willy-Nilly — Anything you put on the Internet stays there forever, so think before you post.

5. Get Some Recommendations — Have people endorse you on LinkedIn. Think of it as an “extension of your resume,” as Brown writes.

6. Boast a Bit — Don’t be shy about posting examples of your work. Everyone does.

7. Join LinkedIn Groups — By participating in professional groups, you’ll be able to communicate with other people in your fields, and as you look for a job, that could make all the difference.


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