You’ve finally got the interview you’ve been waiting for and preparation has begun to blow the interviewers socks off! As much as interview preparation is key to your success, in today’s job hunting world you have to be sure not to overlook one very important factor in the process, a social media clean-up.

Here are our tips to help you cleanse your accounts and not put off those hiring managers when they see what you get up to out of work.

UPDATE YOUR PHOTO

It’s time to take down the photo of you hanging off your best friend or with a drink in your hand and put something a bit more akin to a head-shot across your networks. We’re not suggesting a professional head-shot as that would literally scream ‘I’ve done a clean-up’ but something a bit more suitable for potential employers’ eyes. As much as you can make your social media accounts private your profile picture is almost always visible.

PHOTO DELETION

Whilst you’re updating your profile photo you may as well cleanse the rest of your photographic history. We’re not suggesting removing your entire personality but just the ones that show you in a less than squeaky clean light. Photos that depict drinking, drug use, illegal activities and anything overtly sexual will not be looked upon well. Photos with friends and family are great. Be sure to also un-tag yourself from anything that friends have uploaded. If you can’t do that then ask them to remove the offending photo so that it doesn’t appear on your timeline.

POST DELETION

It’s not just images than can cause harm. What you say is much more of a reflection of who you actually are. If you frequently post rude, offensive posts that contain bad language remove them immediately. There are many ways that can make you look like a less desirable applicant so go through your accounts and delete anything which you think makes you look less professional.

NO WORK MOANS

Everyone moans about their job at some point but bringing your work onto social media can only lead to trouble, whether it’s bad-mouthing a boss or talking about current projects. Both will lead to an employer being wary of you. Don’t do it.

UPDATE YOUR INFO

You may have forgotten the ‘About Me’ section on Facebook that you created 8 years ago but potential employers will look at this to see where your interests lie. Update this with relevant interests and remove anything which may now be a bit embarrassing. Most employers will focus on LinkedIn accounts so be sure that this is up to date, offer as much information as possible and join relevant networking groups.

Not all potential employers look at social media accounts prior to hiring but it is becoming more common practice so taking care of it now will mean you’re social media self will be ready should they decide to.