New research has found that while 80 percent of tech employees tailor their CVs, over half (55%) do not update their LinkedIn profiles, leaving irrelevant information that could be harmful to their career progression.

The research also exposes other social media blunders like posting inappropriate pictures online or using bad spelling and grammar.

2,000 British workers were surveyed by Randstad Technologies. It was found that while 80 percent of tech employees tailor their CVs, over half (55%) do not update their LinkedIn profiles. Though this is higher compared to employees in other sectors such as legal (24%), finance (20%), a significant number of employees are still failing to personalise their profiles, hence hurting their career prospects.

Percentage of Tech workers
I tailor my CV only 42%
I tailor both my CV and my LinkedIn profile 38%
I don’t tailor either 13%
I tailor my LinkedIn profile only 7%

Ruth Jacobs, managing director of Randstad Technologies commented: “It is worrying that over half of professionals in the Tech sector are not paying attention to their online persona, even though this information is more immediately available and accessible than ever before.

“Social media has become an important communication platform, and more employers now check these channels to review potential candidates for suitability and to obtain more information – particularly through LinkedIn. Candidates need to be aware that this is essentially an online CV. Unless you have the time to personalise your profile for each role, it is better to include less information than overcrowd it with too much, which may only serve to highlight your extraneous experience and skills. Too much information can be harmful if a potential employer decides it is not relevant.”

Over 65 percent of survey respondents said that they do not worry about future employers reviewing their social media, though a quarter admitted concerns about social media blunders such as offensive posts and inappropriate pictures. A quarter of tech workers considered bad spelling and grammar a potential social media pitfall.

Also, those from the tech sector were more likely to investigate a prospective candidate from Facebook (39%) or LinkedIn (32%) compared with other types of media such as a cursory Google search or Twitter review.

Considering the amount we hear about talent shortages and digital skills gaps here on HRreview, we think that tech workers may simply be immune to the effects of a badly managed LinkedIn account – basically, if you can write Java and CSS, you’re gold.

What do you think? Would a jumbled LinkedIn account shift a candidate into the no pile? Or are some workers so skilled that their social media presence simply doesn’t matter? Let us know in the comments.





Tom Phelan is an assistant editor at HRreview. Prior to this position, Tom was a staff writer at ITProPortal, where he travelled the globe in pursuit of the latest tech developments. He also writes for a variety of music blogs.