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Jobseekers, it’s not okay to connect with your interviewer on Social Media

Updated: 14 Apr 2016
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You want to stand out and make a good impression in your next job interview, but recruiting experts Hays warns that sending a LinkedIn connection or we-chat friend request to your interviewer is not the way to do it.
Social media is an important networking and researching tool, but there are boundaries and experts say that jobseekers need to be aware of the appropriate way to utilise social media before and after a job interview.
“It makes sense for jobseekers to look at publicly available information on social media as part of their pre-interview research,” says Christine Wright, Managing Director of Hays in Asia. “But there is a difference between researching in order to prepare for your interview and crossing the line from an enthusiastic candidate to a pushy and aggressive one.
“That line definitely gets crossed when a candidate sends a request to their interviewer before or immediately after an interview to connect on LinkedIn. If you get the job by all means connect, but until then it can make you seem presumptuous as you are implying a level of familiarity that doesn't exist.  
“The same rule applies to all social media – so do not send a we-chat friend request to your interviewer. It is not inappropriate and more than anything points to your inexperience when it comes to professional business conduct,” says Christine.
So what can you do? According to Hays it is perfectly acceptable to research your interviewer on social media, provided you focus on:
  • Determining how her or his role relates to the role you have applied for – this can give you a better idea of how to focus your answers, for example on the technical aspects or on the implementation process. 
  • The culture of the organisation – you can get a feel for the type of person who is likely to excel in the organisation.
  • Projects and clients – you can go into your interview understanding the type of projects or clients the organisation works on and with.
  • 1st degree connections in common – you can check if you have any former work colleagues in common. If you do, ask if they can tell you anything more about the company.
  • Published blogs or articles – read any published blogs or articles written by your interviewer. It’ll give you an insight into his or her point of view on current industry trends.
  • Comments – you can comment on one or two of her or his industry-related blog posts. If you make an insightful comment your interviewer may recognise your name when it comes time for your interview, but don’t overdo it.
In China Hays operates from four local offices: Shanghai, Beijing, Suzhou and Guangzhou.
Hays, the world’s leading recruiting experts in qualified, professional and skilled people.
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About Hays

Hays China operates four local offices in Shanghai, Beijing, Suzhou and Guangzhou. It is the local representative office for Hays plc, which is a global company. As at 31 December 2014 Hays employed 8,748 staff operating from 244 offices in 33 countries across 20 specialisms. For the year ended 30 June 2014, Hays placed around 57,000 candidates into permanent jobs and around 212,000 people into temporary assignments. 24% of Group net fees were generated in Asia Pacific.

Hays operates in the following countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Chile, China, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UAE, the UK and the USA.