Social Media Recruiting: How to Keep it Legal
Social media has greatly impacted everyone’s lives, including businesses. While many employers focus on using online platforms to market their company, many hiring managers are also using it as a recruiting tool. Similarly to how candidates cannot be discriminated against during an interview, there are certain rules to follow if you acquire more information about a job applicant through his or her Facebook page, Twitter account and anything else about the person online. When using social media recruiting, it is crucial to know the legality of it and what can and cannot be done.
Discovering Personal Information
Practically everyone has a social media page of some sort, and once you have someone’s resume, it would be fairly simple to find a candidate online. If you do decide to search for applicants, then you need to be careful with what you may find. This is especially true if you search for people before you have actually met them in person. Not only will you discover a person’s ethnicity and gender, but you may also find that they have posted information related to religion, sexual orientation, political leanings and age. You may also discover information about a candidate’s personality. For instance, you may find that someone applying for a job at your company has several posts about how he hates working for his current boss.
There are various ways to protect yourself for any lawsuits if you do decide to utilize social media recruiting. If you are going to look at candidates’ profiles, then you need to look up everyone at the same point in the process. For example, you can look up additional information for everyone after all the interviews have been conducted. If something does come up on a social media page that causes you to question a person’s professionalism, then make sure to take a screen shot of it for later reference if needed.
Be Delicate With Bad Information
There is plenty of ïbadï material you might come across when reviewing someone’s social media profile. You might see that there are pictures of them partying and getting drunk, or you might see that they regularly make ignorant comments. The best thing to do is to treat this the same way as if it came up during an interview. Think about how you would react if a candidate said something incredibly bigoted during an interview. However, the best thing when it comes to social media recruiting is to speak with an attorney who is knowledgeable in that area. A lawyer will be able to provide you with in-depth, relevant information to the details you present.
Maintain Your Own Social Media Presence
Similarly to how you can look for anyone you want to, job applicants will likely do a search for you as well. Make sure your own accounts are professional and contain relevant information to the position you hold. You also need to make sure the business itself has a good presence online. Your company’s page should state that you are an Equal Opportunity Employer. You should also avoid stating anything that could be misconstrued as a guarantee of employment. For example, saying something like, ïWe hire everyoneï is not good. Make sure everything you say on your company’s pages is accurate and legal.
There are quite a few things you cannot do when it comes to social media recruiting. Follow these tips in order to stay on the right side of the law:
-In the event that you have a third party review applicants’ profiles, make sure that you abide by the Fair Credit Reporting Act.
-While you do not need people to sign a waiver to review their Facebook page, you could still give people advanced warning that you will be checking social media pages.
-If you are checking profiles, make sure to check everyone’s.
-Only use information you find that directly came from the job candidate. Do not consider information that comes from another source because you can never be sure if it is accurate or unbiased.
-You cannot ask for a candidate’s password.
Social media recruiting can be a useful tool, especially if you are hiring for a position that requires a comprehensive understanding of social media. You might discover information that actually showcases a candidate’s talents and makes them an even better potential employee. Facebook and other social media pages are not going away any time soon, so it is crucial you, as an employer, know how to use it effectively.
Check out other Mighty Recruiter resources to see how you can hire efficiently and legally.