4 Tips to Improve Your Online Image

Question:

I've heard that employers increasingly look at job seekers' online profiles when deciding if they'd be a good fit for their company. How can I spruce up my online image? 

 

Answer:

What you’ve heard is true — which is why it’s essential that your online persona is an accurate reflection of you at your best. Here are a few ways to help make sure that’s the case. 

1. Control the flow of information 

If someone types your name into a search engine, what will they see and learn? While it’s great to spend hours grooming your LinkedIn profile, potential employers are likely to cast a wide net, so you need to present yourself well and consistently across all platforms. If necessary, tweak your privacy settings so your personal feed is visible only to friends and family. 

2. Choose the right photo 

First impressions matter, and a hiring manager will start forming an opinion of you from the moment they see your profile pic. Studio headshots can be a worthwhile investment — just be sure to keep your photo current, and update it if your appearance changes. Make sure you’re dressed appropriately, framed from the shoulders up and in front of a neutral background. 

3. Make your bio relevant 

Social media is a powerful tool for networking, and each platform provides the opportunity to share a bit about yourself. On LinkedIn specifically, you should include current details about your employment history, education, skill set and legal certifications. 

It can also help to mention some of your hobbies and interests so you present yourself as well-rounded as well as a talented legal professional. 

4. Post thoughtfully 

Post often — but be careful about what you post. Does the content reflect negatively on a previous employer or the legal profession in general? Think twice. But if it shows you to be hungry for new knowledge and engaged with the latest issues? Post it. 

If in doubt, err on the side of caution and simplicity. For example, while it’s true that sharing content isn’t the same as endorsing it, that distinction could easily be lost on a hiring manager who has only a few moments to scan your feed. 

 

As a job candidate, there are many things outside your control. By following these steps and reviewing your status regularly, you can help prevent your online presence from being one of them.