‘Three quarters of employers check social media before interviews’

Three-quarters of interviewers will check candidate’s social media as part of their interview preparation, according to a new survey.

The survey of 8,599 candidates and 268 recruiters by Totaljobs also finds that only 36% of candidates expect their social media to be screened.

It showed that 70% of employers spend less than an hour preparing for an interview, compared to 34% of candidates who spend over three hours preparing for each interview. Some 88% of employers say that candidates should spend more time researching the company and 81% said candidates should spend more time thinking of questions to ask the employer. Other areas employers singled out were: re-reading the job description [75% said this was a good idea]; researching the industry [71%]; thinking of potential questions they’ll be asked and how they’ll respond [67%];  re-reading their CV [49%]; and figuring out their journey to the interview [48%]. Some 20% said candidates should spend more time choosing their outfit.

Nevertheless, 38% of employers said that, on average, interviewees are more prepared now than they were five years ago. The survey also asked about the post-interview process. Some 57% of employers say that they always offer feedback after interviews, while only 3% admit that they do not. In contrast, however, only 6% of candidates say they always receive feedback, with just 15% saying they receive it ‘most of the time’.

Nearly all (95%) candidates state that they want to receive interview feedback, whether positive or negative, with 79% wishing to know mistakes that they made during the interview. However, of those who did receive feedback, 62% received positive feedback while only 33% had received feedback on their mistakes.

Totaljobs HR Director David Clift said: Interesting disparities exist between employers’ and candidates’ experience of interviews. Traditionally the burden to ‘prove’ themselves has very much fallen on the side of the candidate, but it is still important employers prepare a good interview to ensure that candidates have a chance to give the best of themselves.

“Employers and candidates also seem to have vastly different experiences when it comes to feedback. Candidates can’t be expected to refine their interview technique without being told what they’re doing well and what they need to work on. 70% of candidates told us that they take the feedback on board, and apply it in future interviews, suggesting that with more in-depth feedback, we may be able to improve the process for all parties.”

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