Eliminating Candidates Based on Online Information

With at least 90% of us regularly tapping Google to dig deeper into candidates’ backgrounds, how many “digital deal-breakers” have caused you to think twice about a candidate’s total package?

On the one hand, it might be odd if your candidate has zero Internet references — no blog comments, published articles, online community participation, or accounts on LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter.

But worse than being invisible, according to a new ExecuNet report, is when recruiters are forced to scrap an otherwise suitable candidate because an Internet search reveals potential ethics violations, falsified employment history, felony convictions, shady connections, and more.

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In 2005, only 26% of executive recruiters eliminated candidates due to online information. That number jumped to 36% in 2006, and is now at 48% in 2010.

The Executive Job Market Intelligence 2010 is based on simultaneous surveys of ExecuNet’s executive members and the search firms and corporate recruiters who regularly use its services.

Elaine Rigoli has nearly 15 years of experience managing content and community for various B2B and consumer websites. Elaine has written thousands of business and technology articles and has been quoted in The Wall Street Journal and eWeek, among other publications.


1 Comment on “Eliminating Candidates Based on Online Information

  1. Over the last year, my firm has had two searches where we eliminated a short-list candidate because of information we uncovered via the internet. In one instance, it was the revelation that the candidate had not fully disclosed their employment history and when confronted was still less then forth coming; so they were eliminated because of integrity. In the other instance, it was an almost cliché case of one’s personal life being so extreme, it raised serious concerns about their ability to keep it separate from their professional life. Since they were under consideration for a visible role within a publicly-traded company, everyone was in agreement that the risk was too great in light of what was known.

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