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Don't let your online past ruin your future career

1 May 2013

Nearly half (45%) of job hunters said past Twitter activity should never be taken into account by prospective employers, according to a recent survey from Hays, the leading recruiting expert. However, 55% agreed that employers should look at a potential employee’s Twitter account when considering them for a role. Of the group who deemed it to be acceptable, 42% said the decision was dependent on an employees’ occupation. Under a fifth (13%) said tweets should always be taken into account by prospective employers.

Steve Orr, Director at Hays comments “The growing use of social media is increasingly blurring the line between people’s personal and professional lives. While no employer should make a hiring decision based entirely on what they see online, it’s now extremely easy to find out an incredible level of personal detail about potential employees with just a quick search. Our survey shows that 45% of job hunters are leaving themselves at risk as they don’t believe that employers should look at past tweets. People should use social media responsibly and apply the appropriate privacy settings to avoid distracting an employer from anything other than the task at hand of assessing their suitability for the job. Our guide can help people to understand how their social media presence can affect their career and give them top tips about how to be social media smart.”

Top five tips to be social media smart:
1. Consider creating separate personal and professional accounts
2. Think carefully about what you share and where, if it’s something you wouldn’t want a new employer to see, don’t post it
3. Look the part: choose a recent and professional profile photograph
4. Keep up to date: add contacts and accomplishments regularly
5. Check privacy settings regularly so you know what’s going public in your name

To view the new Hays social media guide with more tips and advice visit:


About the survey

Survey results from an online poll of 492 visitors to, collected in April 2013

About Hays

Hays plc (the "Group") is a leading global professional recruiting group. The Group is the expert at recruiting qualified, professional and skilled people worldwide, being the market leader in the UK and Asia Pacific and one of the market leaders in Continental Europe and Latin America. The Group operates across the private and public sectors, dealing in permanent positions, contract roles and temporary assignments. As at 30 June 2012 the Group employed 7,800 staff operating from 245 offices in 33 countries across 20 specialisms. For the year ended 30 June 2012:

– the Group reported net fees of £734 million and operating profit (pre-exceptional items) of £128 million;
– the Group placed around 55,000 candidates into permanent jobs and around 182,000 people into temporary assignments;
– 33% of Group net fees were generated in Asia Pacific, 36% in Continental Europe & RoW (CERoW) and 31% in the United Kingdom & Ireland;
– the temporary placement business represented 56% of net fees and the permanent placement business represented 44% of net fees;
– Hays operates in the following countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Chile, China, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UAE, the UK and the USA

For further press information please contact:
Deepa Bose
T. 020 7200 3760