Whenever we receive a candidate for a job interview, we want to identify how suitable they are for a certain position. Being able to determine if an applicant is the best choice for our company tends to be a complicated process. Sometimes, a job interview and a resume won’t give us all the information that we need. However, analyzing the digital footprint of job applicants can help us fill in the blanks regarding a candidate’s background.
There are several aspects to consider before analyzing the digital footprint of job applicants, though. To begin with, we have to understand what a digital footprint is. We should also consider what is the importance of analyzing the digital footprint of job applicants. Lastly, we may want to question whether this might count as a privacy violation or not.
What Exactly is A Digital Footprint?
The term digital footprint refers to the permanent record of our online activity. Social media, websites, blogs, videos, photos, and pretty much all and any content created by or about a person contributes to their digital footprint. Besides, any other kind of data a person generates is part of such a footprint.
Any activity or communication that we have online will be part of our digital footprint. This data stays on the internet forever, basically. This is because, even when we might erase a photo or comment from our profiles, they are still stored in a database and will, most likely, never disappear.
What Is the Importance of Analyzing the Digital Footprint of Job Applicants?
There are several reasons why companies are analyzing the digital footprint of job applicants more than ever. To begin with, it allows us to obtain a deeper insight into the lives of our candidates. When we do this, we are looking for candidates who share values and principles that align with those of our business. That is why social media plays a major role when we have job interviews or applications.
We must be careful, though, and make sure we have a team of professionals running our digital footprint analyses. We need to avoid falling into biases and opinions that are not entirely job-related. Also, we should consider having an outline of the qualities and practices we are looking for from applicants.
Is Analyzing the Digital Footprint of Job Applicants a Privacy Violation?
One of the most important concerns that surround analyzing the digital footprint of job applicants relates to their privacy. One key aspect to consider is that, sometimes, the information posted on social media or other websites is already public. However, some data might be harder to find than others.
Another aspect we should always have in mind is that of consent. Whenever we find ourselves analyzing the digital footprint of our candidates, we should always make sure they agree to that. This will not only enable us to obtain more information, but it will generate trust, too. Informing job applicants about the purpose of this process will make them feel more comfortable during the hiring process. This will also improve our company’s perception, which in turn will bring several benefits.