Social Media Screening: The Potential Benefits and Risks
Long before the digital era, candidates’ resumes became the essential source of information for companies before selecting the fit and proper candidate. Now companies can retrieve more potential details from social media platforms. Serving like ‘data bank’, social media networks contain information, which is most probably not written in resumes.
Thus, effective social media screening can provide serial of important information, such as behavior. It is possible that companies may find behavior indicators that should be considered and evaluated before coming into decision.
Finding such information helps companies reduce the risks of brand and company damage as well as protect employees and customers from the setbacks of a wrong hiring decision.
However, conducting in-house screening social media can cost much time with uncomprehensive result. Also, it can potentially cause legal and ethical problems. Alternatively, companies can hire third parties as they are experienced and trusted hiring companies.
While selecting the best third party to hire, it is better for a company to convey several of the following key questions:
- Are searches limited to publicly available information?
It is important to assure that the third party limit its search to publicly available information in order to prevent raising legal and ethical problems.
- Are searches limited to social media sites, such as Facebook and LinkedIn?
The relevant and legally actionable information can be found in other online resources, such as online forum, blogs, and news sites. The more resources, the better.
- Is technology used exclusively during the screening process? Is there any human analyst involved to asses, review and confirm the findings?
Some information may contain implicit meanings that cannot be detected only by algorithms, but require human consideration. Make sure the third party has a human analyst.
- How to prevent false identification from happening?
One of the biggest risks of conducting social media screening is false identification. Make sure that the third party provides step to prevent it.
Social Intelligence Corp (2017).What Every Employer Needs to Know About Social Media and Web-Based Background Checks. http://go.socialintel.com/social-intelligence-white-paper/