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Reflections of an Executive Resume Writer
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Improve Your Job Prospects with 82% of Recruiters through Good Online Strategy

A whopping 82% of recruiters say positive information found about you online will improve your prospects for an executive job, and a full 50% say they have dropped an executive candidate from consideration due to information found about them on the Internet. These are observations from a recently released long-term study by ExecuNet.

“Googling” candidates is now considered a best practice among executive recruiters (90% of them do this to supplement information in your executive resume). This makes it critical that the information they find is complimentary, reinforces your brand, and validates the claims you make in your executive resume.

It is important to note that a recruiter’s primary purpose in Googling you is not to look for an excuse to disqualify you, but rather to get a more complete picture of you and what you have to offer. However, it is also important to keep in mind that there has been a 92% increase in rejections due to so-called “digital dirt” since 2005. If you are proactively managing your career, you need to do everything possible to make sure digital dirt does not derail it.

What are some of the “dealbreakers” that will doom your chances?

1) A criminal record

2) Unfavorable tweets about your management style

3) An online profile that does not align with your executive resume

4) Charges of workplace sexual harassment

5) Photos or posts on Facebook that involve drugs, alcohol, or nudity

Be careful what you tweet and watch what you post on Facebook! There is no assurance of privacy once information is on the Web, no matter how well you think it is hidden or tucked behind the walls of privacy settings. (A case in point: Recently some previously private messages posted prior to 2010 on Facebook became public on Facebook’s new Timeline.) Don’t put anything on the Information Superhighway (Internet) you would not be comfortable seeing on a billboard as you drive along the Interstate.

One way to ensure recruiters gain a good impression of you through a Google search is to populate the Internet with positive information about you which can be controlled. This strategy will also limit the impact of negative information (digital dirt).

Since 8 in 10 recruiters will look more favorably on you if they find positive information on the Web, what kinds of positive information do they find to be the most persuasive? According to ExecuNet’s survey, these are the top three categories as ranked by a sampling of 313 recruiters:

1) Subject-matter expertise (presentations, published articles, etc.)

2) Connections with top executives on a business or professional network

3) Mentions in press releases.

This means that it makes good career sense to cultivate media interviews and actively offer your expertise through presentations and published works. Strive continually to build and interact with your online networks, especially on LinkedIn. Write and promote a blog on your areas of special expertise. These things will deliver career dividends for years to come.


2 comments on “Improve Your Job Prospects with 82% of Recruiters through Good Online Strategy
  1. CV writing says:

    An online presence has never been more important for job seekers. It just has to be good though. An online CV or profile can often make or break the chance of getting that job.

  2. John Jantjies says:


    Let’s face it; there are millions of talented, eager applicants
    out there that are just asenthusiastic as you are.
    Remember, that unemployed guy next to you might not
    be all that stupid…in fact you just might have the same
    grade point average for all you know. Why is he jobless then?
    Because it takes more than just a written account of
    accomplishments and college degrees to land the job
    of your dreams…and that’s a fact.
    The best person for the job may not necessarily be the
    one who actually gets it. There is more to it than an
    astounding resume or a foolproof cover letter. When you
    apply for a job, the employer sees you as an entire package.
    You’re not just the guy with a winning smile,
    the girl with near-genius IQ level or the brunette who arrived
    15 minutes late. So what do employers
    do? They devise a harmless little chitchat to get to know you
    and your potential as a future asset to their company.
    This getting-to-know chat unfortunately
    involves a lot of unpredictable questions
    that might leave you squirming in your seat.
    The notion of selling yourself to a complete
    stranger that you’ve just met isn’t quite comforting, is it?

    The ratio of the jobless versus the employed is
    not a very pretty picture nowadays. You can’t
    afford to lose another opportunity to land “that job”…not to
    the guy with the winning smile, the girl
    with the near-genius IQ or the brunette
    who arrived 15 minutes late. It’s high time
    the spotlight landed on you!

    John Jantjies