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Are you using social media to pre-screen employees?

Screening • Feb 14, 2023 12:00:00 PM • Written by: Georgia Reynolds

In this whitepaper, we discuss how social media has impacted society in the past decade and how HR professionals are using it to support the wider recruitment and onboarding process. Social media searches offer a broad image of the candidate in an informal setting, this information can help avoid making the wrong recruitment decision. Furthermore, we discuss what to consider while conducting social media searches, the content available and how a third-party screening service provider like Giant Screening can help your business with these searches.

“We have now achieved a robust screening process without impacting on the need to hire new employees speedily and match the needs of the business. "

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Social media has become an essential part of everyday life. People are engaging with each other more than ever before. The last decade has demonstrated how social media has influenced society and the positive and negative impacts it creates. In the UK alone, the number of social media users is predicted to hit 51 million by 2025. As the world is evolving and growing rapidly companies are struggling to adapt when it comes to protecting their employees, customers, and brand reputation, therefore need help to do so when recruiting the right candidate. Due to the rapid changes and vast amount of information now available, it’s no surprise recruiters and HR professionals are using social media to support the wider recruitment onboarding process.

This is where social media can provide a positive impact when used correctly. Social media searches offer in-depth profile insights that help employers to minimise the risks associated with unsuitable candidates and avoid potential negative impacts to their existing workforce, customers, or brand. Common platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter can provide significant background information about the candidates’ beliefs, attitudes, and behaviours which are being used to make hiring decisions.

For these reasons, social media checks are heavily influencing the recruitment process within HR departments globally to protect their employees and brand reputation however, using the information responsibly is vital. Social media is here to stay so using it wisely is the logical way forward but are all companies following best practice?

What to consider?

There are many companies out there, using their methods of sourcing social media data without a defined policy in place to justify hiring decisions. Simply “googling” candidates is a risky and subjective approach that could breach regulations and legislation. Online information may not always be accurate, up to date, or provide context and must be assessed accurately. It’s key to consider the risks involved when looking at candidates’ data without some important rules and expert guidance in place first. The check should only be completed as part of a wider screening process and not be used for general candidate assessment during the recruitment journey.

Candidates must always provide consent to any checks that will be used as part of their employment screening. The candidate should also have the right to respond to any information found online. If the checks aren’t handled appropriately, this could significantly impact trust and the entire recruitment process. Using a recognised third party to complete thorough and relevant social media checks ensures you don’t let unconscious bias creep in and leave you open to accusations. Accurate, up-to-date and reliable information provided from a trusted third party will ensure a robust, consistent, and compliant approach every time a check is completed.

What information can Social Media checks include?

-Inappropriate / undesirable content
-Sexist or racist behaviour
-Sexually explicit content
-Extreme views/opinions
-Illegal activity such as drugs, theft, and weapons
-Connections to or supportive of organisations and terrorist groups
-Linked to lobby or advocate/activist groups
-Adverse media and news reports
-Links to bribery, corruption, or fraud

Here to help you get it right

Over 70% of employers are now completing social media checks on all new hires and re-screening annually as part of their ongoing policy so getting it right from a best practice stance is vital. The social media checks Giant Screening provides are far more advanced than in-house searches and specifically created to remove the associated risks that basic in-house research won’t discover. The sophisticated technologies and analysis tools used by our teams deliver a comprehensive in-depth report designed to remain compliant with legislation and HR guidelines.

Our service delivers the confidence to employers that all checks are compliant, thorough, and consistent to support the assessment of their candidates. Building a trusted workforce has never been easier when partnering with Giant Screening, we are here to help protect your business and employees with all your screening requirements. Please get in touch to explore how we can support your business with social media checks and our extensive range of employee screening solutions.

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Georgia Reynolds

Marketing Coordinator – Content