Want to Land That Tech Job? Better Start Tweeting!
By Michael Connolly
A recent job posting on Best Buy’s web site has attracted a lot of comment from local and national media. The giant electronics retailer was looking for a Senior Manager – Emerging Media Marketing to be based out of the company’s Richfield, MN corporate headquarters. Two of the preferred qualifications: a graduate degree and 250+ followers on Twitter!
A more detailed description of the qualifications for the position included a Bachelor’s degree, 2+ years of social media marketing experience, 4+ years of people or resource leadership, and 1+ years of active blogging experience. Although many job descriptions now list social media experience as a pre-requisite for hiring, this is the first time that commentators can remember seeing a Twitter presence as a requirement, or the need for a minimum number of fans or followers.
The Best Buy job posting breaks new ground in a number of ways. Previously, any type of online social networking presence was seen as a potential red flag for an employer and a risk for a candidate. Conventional wisdom suggested that too many friends on Facebook indicated a social butterfly mentality – someone more interested in writing wall posts than putting in a serious day’s work. Plus, there was always the danger of a prospective employer stumbling across those old bachelor party photos!
Now, that thinking has been turned on its head. A personal blog or a Twitter account with a decent following suggests that you are serious about your online presence and have something worthwhile to say!
Recruiting firms and PR agencies can see the sense in the approach, without necessarily agreeing with setting a target number. “Their approach signals the way ahead for many companies that now rely on social marketing and reaching influencers to get their messages across,” says Michael Bradley, an independent recruiter based in Manhattan. “However, a lot should depend on the quality of a candidate’s online presence, rather than just the quantity of followers.”
Either way, it appears that social networking sites are no longer just about networking when it comes to that job search – they are fast becoming part of the selection criteria. So if you want your resume to stand out in an increasingly crowded market, you better start tweeting!