Topic 3

Topic 3: Building an Authentic Professional Digital Profile

The digital age has not only had an effect on our private lives, but also our professional ones, including the ways in which we are being recruited, meaning that more of us are being recruited online.


Figure 1: What do recruiters look for in a profile?

LinkedIn remains the recruiters top social networking site of choice, however this doesn’t necessarily mean that this is only digital tool that we should be using to create an authentic profile. Services such as blogs and twitter can help us to put our views and ideas across, and give recruiters a clearer impression of our identity (Tapscott, D. 2014), consequently authenticity is important.

table topic 3.png

Figure 2: Tips for achieving an authentic professional profile.

Although we are encouraged to make a well rounded, authentic profile online, sometimes this backfires, where people don’t stick to the prescribed socially acceptable rules, for what we post, or we can get caught out on our lies, as seen in the headlines in figure 3.

headlines topic 3.png

Figure 3: Headlines showing how our online identity can have consequences on our professional lives.

However if we have to vet everything that we say, and think about our online footprints carefully, does this make what the recruiters see of us online an authentic profile? Surely the whole idea of authenticity should be to project an image of ourselves that is true to who we really are?

Reading into this idea of authenticity is clear that the advice given to be ‘authentic’ isn’t necessarily true to it’s entire definition. Advice on authenticity is instead that we should be building up and maintaining relationships through the online world, keeping our interactions and identities as true to our real life self, however the clear undertone within this is that although we need to be ourselves, we should be careful to only project our ‘best self’ to get on most successfully in the professional world (bizmsolutions).authentic def.png

Figure 4: Dictionary definition of authentic.

Word Count:410

How to Convey Authenticity Online
Authentic Dictionary Reference,
Tapscott, D. 2014. Five Ways Talent Management Must Change.
The Employable, 2014. How blogging can help you get a job.
The BBC. 2013. How to promote yourself online.
Ronson, J. 2015. How One Stupid Tweet Blew Up Justine Sacco’s Life.
Jobvite Statistics
Advice from a Recruiter
Advice from The University of Southampton Careers Service.
Waterlow, L. 2015. ‘I lost my job, my reputation and I’m not able to date anymore’: Former PR worker reveals how she destroyed her life one year after sending ‘racist’ tweet before trip to Africa’. Mail Online.
Kill some Jews’ tweet gets Texas pre-school teacher fired. 2017.
Taylor, M. 2009. The Perils of Oversharing on Facebook. The Wall Street Journal.11 Tweets That Got People Fired From Their Jobs.
Smith, M. 2013. Why People Who Lie On LinkedIn Get Found Out. Marketing Eye.
Semenkovich, M. 2007.Admissions Dean Resigns After Lying on Résumé. The Tech, Online Edition.
Haimson, O. and Hoffmann, A. 2016. Constructing and enforcing “authentic” identity online: Facebook, real names and non-normative identities. First Monday.
van der Nagel, E. and Frith, J. 2015. Anonymity pseudonymity, and the agency of online identity: Examining the social practices of r/Gonewild. First Monday.
Fertik, M. 2012.  Your Future Employer Is Watching You Online. You Should Be, Too.

List of Figures:
Figure 1: Created on Piktochart
Figure 2: Created on Microsoft Word
Figure 3: Created on Microsoft Word
Figure 4: Screenshot from


3 thoughts on “Topic 3: Building an Authentic Professional Digital Profile

  1. Hi Rebecca!

    Interesting post this week. Just something I want to point out, I think you should take care with proofreading your posts! For example: the title in your first infographic is missing a word, which is a shame when you mention just below the title that recruiters are turned away by poor spelling and grammar!

    One thing I liked is how you pointed out that being “authentic” with your online profile isn’t necessarily authentic! However, one thing that sticks in my mind is something that is mentioned in an article and TED Talk that I linked in my own post, which comments on the extremity of the social media reaction on tweets that may just be intended to be a joke or a satirical commentary. What do you think of this? Should an online “mob” latch onto every post and tweet that might be controversial and demonise the source?


    (Word Count: 150)


    1. Hi Andy.
      I definitely do not think that people should be demonized online at all, just like that they shouldn’t be in real life, and I certainly hope that my blog didn’t give you that impression. I think that although certain opinions that people have online may be controversial to the rest of society, the rest of us shouldn’t have the power to destroy their lives. I feel like that the lack of context that the online world affords is one of its issues. If some of the tweets had actually been said in person to others, the reaction may have been different due to the fact that social cues such as body language, tone and pitch can be assessed.

      Liked by 1 person

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