The proliferation of teleworking has made spying on social media more popular among companies. Most often, employers look at employee profiles in an attempt to gauge their personal statements and level of professionalism.
Most companies track employee activity on social media, and this form of control is on the rise with the widespread adoption of teleworking. This conclusion was made by the experts of the recruitment agency UTEAM, having interviewed 147 employers-clients. More than a third of them are companies with over 1,000 employees. According to the survey, 18% of companies constantly monitor employee activity in social networks, 47% do it from time to time. Only a third (36%) are never interested in the social networks of their employees.
As a rule, employers are most closely watching the accounts of executives (77%), as well as professionals who interact with the media (75%) and customers (71%).
At the same time, almost every second company (45%) admits that in the last year and a half – since the active spread of remote employment due to the coronavirus pandemic – control over personnel accounts has increased and managers have begun to visit employees’ pages more often than before.
The main reason (94%) of employers’ interest in employee profiles is the concern that a company’s reputation could be damaged due to their statements on personal pages. In second place are concerns about accidental publication of inside information and documents on social networks (89%). The third reason for monitoring is the need to assess what a person is doing while working remotely.
Employers can also track employees’ social networks to predict when an employee wants to quit, or to better understand their values and interests. The latter, again, became especially important precisely during the pandemic. “Take, for example, the acute topic of vaccination, because if an employee actively takes one or another position on this matter, he can influence the mood of the whole team,” says Natalya Kurantova, Director of Key Accounts at Kelly Services. In general, according to Anna Chataeva, head of the customer service department at UTEAM, the attention of employers to employee profiles is proportional to the position they hold in the company. “A wide audience subscribes to people holding key positions in companies, and each of their statements immediately becomes the property of colleagues, partners, clients and has a certain resonance. Therefore, they should refrain from categorical statements about politics, religion, vaccinations and other high-profile topics, as well as from criticizing current or previous employers and colleagues, ”she notes.
According to UTEAM, employers pay even more attention to the profiles of those who are just going to get a job with them.
Currently, 83% of HR professionals view jobseeker profiles on social media. Most often, when checking applicants on social networks, employers pay attention to the correspondence of the data in the resume and in the profile (85%). Also, through social networks, employers try to find out the professional status and level of expertise of the candidate (79%), find out about his hobbies and outlook on life (65%), assess the nature and manner of communication (65%). As Anna Chataeva notes, as a result, the number of cases when employers refused to consider applicants because of their behavior on social networks is growing. For example, Anastasia Staseva, the head of the BrandUp & YounGo project at Kontakt InterSearch Russia, says that even a photo change in the messenger’s profile can cause a negative reaction. “We were looking for a personal assistant for a shareholder of development projects doing business in Russia and several foreign countries, and one of the requirements was restraint in social networks. We had a candidate who was suitable in all respects, but right at the moment of transferring the profile to the customer, the girl updated her photo in the messenger, posting a frame from a beach vacation, and she was refused hiring, ”she says.