Can Your Night Out Affect Your Employability?

Going out and having a good time is something most people consider to be part of their college experience. While many might agree there is nothing wrong with having a good time as long as you’re safe about it, there can sometimes be some unexpected consequences.

When you’re thinking about a night out with friends, whether it’s at a local bar or a party with friends, it’s important to think about what’s going to happen at that event. Will there be photographs taken? If so, where will those photographs end up? Could those evenings come back to haunt you during your future job search or when you’re thinking about attending graduate or professional school? Unfortunately, the answer is it very well could.

According to careerbuilder.com, over 70% of employers investigate candidates for jobs before making a job offer. That’s a pretty significant amount, especially when you take into consideration the many platforms student utilize. However, there are some things that are sure to get your application placed in the “no” pile, including photos or information about drinking or drug use, racist or discriminatory comments, posts bad mouthing their university o, employers and people who post excessively.

So what can you do about this? Before you start applying for positions, do a sweep of your social media accounts. If they’re not private, consider adjusting your settings so photos and posts are not available publicly. Better yet, go through your accounts and delete anything you would prefer an employer not see. Going forward, consider where your nights out might take you. Bars often post videos or photos of their events and even if you’re not tagged, it’s easy to pick a familiar face out of a crowd.

Being cautious doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy your social media accounts or that you should delete it. In fact, employers can sometimes be put off by a total lack of social media presence. Instead, focus on using your accounts to highlight your skills, show off your involvement or creativity, and connect with others who share similar interests or are in the field you hope to get into.

Chelsea Stanhope
Career Counselor