July 20, 2018 | ° F

Students, staff ponder if Facebook could be useful for career searches

Photo by Edwin Gano |

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg, reports that the average United States consumer spends 40 minutes on Facebook per day, according to USA Today. The article theorized the types of people that students choose to befriend on Facebook correlate with their Holland codes.

A Holland Code is based on the personality of the student. Personalities are divided into six types and the student picks whichever type matches up closest to their personality. The student could then look up careers that match their code.

The personality of a person is complicated and most people would match up with all six types to some extent, according to USA Today.

The Holland Code can be used to search for careers and majors that are congruent with personality type, especially because these attributes and interests will likely be respected, valued and utilized in certain environments, according to the article on USA Today.

Facebook can also work against the student if used incorrectly. Ergo it is important to use social media with caution.

Lawrence Feltz, a School of Arts and Sciences junior, said he once worked at a research company whose sole purpose was to profile individuals and companies for the purpose of connecting people for business ventures.

“Employers have told me they didn't hire other candidates due to something as basic as a Facebook profile page. In addition, the amount of information available to the public is not fully understood by most people who use Facebook,” Feltz said.

Although social media could have merit regarding the job search, some students are skeptical of the claim.

“I think Facebook has merit in some ways, but I'm unsure of how helpful it would be," said Victoria Tripsas, a School of Arts and Sciences senior. “It could help for networking and finding out about available opportunities through others.”

Many students have already discovered that Facebook can be helpful for the job hunt. According Forbes, 83 percent of people looking for a job say they use Facebook in their social media search.

“I think Facebook is another means for students to not just explore what is available, but also to find out what opportunities are there that they can apply to,” said William Jones, director of Operations and Strategic Initiatives.

Many businesses are taking advantage of technology to streamline information and advertise their companies, for customers and potential employees alike.

“Many organizations, whether nonprofit or for-profit, utilize social media to advertise their open positions. It’s a way for you to find the opportunities that are out there,” Jones said.

Some students keep friends and interests from the distant past, even if they do not represent their current life and personality bringing into question the effectiveness Facebook has professionally.

“I am friends with a lot of people I have met in the past that I don't find to be super relevant to my life now,” Tripsas said.

Regardless of whether Facebook can assist a student with networking, it is a useful tool for gathering information.

“Social media is a great way to learn about the company as well," Tripsas said. "You could get a feel for the company’s culture and what’s important to them in the news by what they post on their Facebook page.”

Many resources are available for job searching, and students should take advantage of many of them. The website for Rutgers Undergraduate Career Services lists using social media in the job search as one of many ways to prepare.

“Regardless of whether students choose to use Facebook for professional endeavors or not, it should not replace more traditional resources,” Jones said.

Other things students can do to prepare involve building your resume and practicing the process of interviewing, according to the website for Undergraduate Career Services.

Jones said social media can be one method of many that students should utilize, but it should not be the only thing they use to prepare and learn about the organization. She said the key to her advice is that there is not simply one method to find a job. 

“All in all, when you go to the interviews, you want to know what you’re talking about. You want to sound like you know something about the organization,” Jones said. “Social media can be one of many methods you should use in order to research the organization and prepare.”

Connor McCarthy

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