As homey and comfortable as social media feels to teenagers, adolescents should be aware of the implications of their future posts.
In 2018, 70 percent of employers used social media to screen candidates during the hiring process, according to a survey by CareerBuilder. A few things employers are looking at when they research the accounts: information that supports a candidate’s qualifications for the job if the person has a professional online persona and a reason not to hire the candidate.
From a business perspective, screening potential workers before hiring them makes sense; an organization wants to hire individuals that have a good reputation, as that person will also represent the business. In 2019, it’s okay if teenagers receive similar screening procedures as adults.
Adolescence used to be a grace period, a time where teenagers could blame their misbehaviors as “young and stupid mistakes,” and excuse all their errors. But now, as adolescents whittle their way into adulthood sooner, as shown in Oregon where the voting age may drop to 16 and in the Dakotas where teens can get a restricted license before 16. In fact, six states allow minors to get abortions without parental notification or consent.
Teenagers want society to treat them as adults.
This is not to say adults hold more responsibility for their actions online, but when one is applying for a job or college, he or she consents to the expectations of an adult. In essence, if one makes adult decisions he or she should expect adult consequences.
Teenagers in 2019 should make a habit of evaluating their presence on social media when applying for any employers that might take their conduct online into consideration. Better yet, evaluate they should social media posts and comments at the end of every month and consider the implications of such content.
It’s understandable some would feel wary about the idea that employers or colleges can determine their opinions of an individual based on their online profiles; however, those worries should not be an issue. People, along with their opinions, beliefs and characteristics, change throughout their lifetimes and some worry that old posts will misinform employers and colleges of people’s current behaviors and virtues.
Individuals can delete or apologize for any post he or she does not like or agree with anymore, which is why teens should monitor their accounts before applying for jobs or to college; a business or admissions officer will view an individual’s social media presence as authentic to their real-life self because that is the method in which they research candidates.
It’s not a big deal that employers screen minors; however, businesses and colleges should tell individuals before the screening so that teenagers have a warning to clean their social medias of posts they do not agree with anymore. Employers should also not look for characteristics that are discriminatory such as sex, religion, national origin and disabilities, but for skills and abilities that actually pertain to the place of work and the person’s potential job.
While it would be nice to hide behind the fact that we’re young, youth in 2019 is not like a decade ago. Unfortunately, we’re all aware that what we post online can be spread everywhere, and we have to take responsibility for our actions.
Should minors be held accountable for their social media? Let us know in the comments below!