It is now commonplace for recruiters to check a candidate’s social media activity before hire. In a survey by Chicago pollster Challenger, Gray and Christmas, 60% of the human resource executives surveyed admit to checking an applicant's posts on social media sites such as Facebook. However, only 6% of those doing the checking stated as a significant impact on their hiring decision.
Legally a company cannot base a hiring decision solely on their exploration of the candidate’s social media activity. Instead it is a clue that personal issues might exist including poor judgment, lack of discretion, attitude problems and poor teamwork among others.
The most flagrant examples of what a recruiter may find in their investigation include comments about wild parties, excessive drinking, drugs, health issues and profanity. A professional “nicknames” are also a tip that the recruiter may want to explore during an interview – or could lead to passing on an interview altogether.
Use it as an introduction to discussion or as a call-to-order following a break.
This video is especially useful when dealing with these topics: