Most young people are regular users of social media -Instagram, YouTube, Facebook. They use a range of digital platforms to stay connected with friends/peers and to share the things that interest them. But how many consider the role of social media when it comes to looking for a work experience placement, job, apprenticeship or university place?
This article will provide some ideas about how your students might go about developing their online presence and shaping their digital footprint to support career building? It will also look at how, as a career professional, you can support them.
Social media is central to students’ employability. The internet offers your students a space within which they can manage/ build their reputations and ‘sell themselves’ to employers . It is where conversations can be undertaken, contacts identified and networks maintained. Platforms such as Instagram or YouTube can provide a real opportunity for young people to shine.
Just 10 years ago bloggers and vloggers were virtually unheard of but now young people can make a career of this as well as using it to promote their skills and ideas. When used well social media can help students to find out about and transition into their future. However, it is important to remember that if social media is used badly, it can seriously disadvantage a students’ career development - employers frequently check out prospective employees’ digital footprints, so maintaining an ‘uncontroversial’ social media presence is a must when job hunting.
Are you currently addressing these issues with your students?