Social media and our online world is fantastic, isn't it? Whether for keeping in touch with friends and family, sharing some great news, documenting areas of your life through pictures or on your own blog... there's just so much that we can use it for.
Have you ever searched for someone online to see what you can find out about them? Perhaps a new colleague, someone you met in the gym, or even a potential new partner. Most of us have been guilty of this tongue-in-cheek online 'stalking', if the information is at your disposal and you can find out something interesting, then why not?
What if the shoe is on the other foot?
How would you feel if someone looked online to find information about you? Would you want to hide certain posts that you have made, or would you be happy and sure that everything they discovered about you was fit for public consumption? Taking this up a notch, how would you feel if a potential employer carried out a search on you?
With so much available in the public domain, it stands to reason that employers will use tools like Facebook and Twitter to find out a little bit more about job candidates when making decisions about who would be the right fit for the position. There is nothing wrong with this, in fact it could even be considered negligent if they didn't, especially when recruiting within the healthcare profession.
The best thing for you to do is to check what a search engine and various social media channels show up about you and decide whether you would be happy for an employer to see this. If there are any images or posts that are glaringly unprofessional – nudity, explicit sexual imagery or behaviour, or drug and alcohol misuse – it would be in your best interest to take these down. We're not saying you should censor your entire life, showing some personality is encouraged, but it would be prudent to ensure that the content you post online is professional and 'PG rated'!