Monster.com editorial manager Charles Purdy posted a long and thoughtful comment on our post about how Facebook app BeKnown’s auto-post settings might not be the best thing for jobseekers who are already FB friends with their bosses.
Here is what Purdy said:
Here’s our take: If you’re friends with your boss and other colleagues on Facebook, letting them know that you’ve joined a professional network (one that’ll help you develop your career and connect with other people in your field) will benefit you. It shows you take your career seriously. Considering the other things many people put on their Facebook walls, it sort of seems like the last thing a person should be worried about.
In fact, if you’re friends with your boss on Facebook, we recommend inviting him or her to join you on BeKnown after you’ve joined — because it’s a great place to connect with new customers, clients, industry influencers, and new employees.
BeKnown is a professional-networking platform that allows you to present yourself in a professional way on the world’s most active social platform, without allowing BeKnown-only contacts access to your personal videos, photos, and so on. As with the professional networks that came before BeKnown, looking for a job is only one of the many benefits it provides. Yes, it allows you to show off your skills and background — like posting an online portfolio or resume does. But we developed BeKnown to be a full-fledged network that also allows users to connect with like-minded people — to learn from, share with, and help one another.
As we often advise job seekers, if you “network” only when you’re looking for a job, you’re doing it wrong.
And as we often advise our employer customers, retaining great employees is not something they can be complacent about. It’s never safe to assume that an employee won’t be wooed away by a great offer, even if that employee isn’t “actively looking” (and according to a widely reported on Monster.com poll, 98% of workers said they would at least consider a new job opportunity). That’s because, of course, in addition to those resume- or portfolio-hosting sites, and in addition to professional-networking platforms, those employees have real-world networks of friends, past colleagues, former college mates, and so on — and on and on. I talk to a lot of employers, and employee retention is one of their primary concerns, as it should be.
To our way of thinking, joining BeKnown — and inviting all your colleagues and contacts to join you there — can only benefit employees and bosses.
There are a number of good points here, especially those that remind jobseekers that you should be networking long before you need a job.
But “Considering the other things many people put on their Facebook walls, it sort of seems like the last thing a person should be worried about.”
There’s a logical problem here, as we see it:
If you currently put stuff on your Facebook page that casts you in a bad light (drunk pictures etc), you are probably not already friends with your boss on Facebook, and BeKnown would be one good way for you to get in touch with him/her without letting him/her see your personal pictures. (Other good ways: LinkedIn etc.)
But if you are currently friends with your boss on Facebook, you probably aren’t posting incriminating stuff to your wall. So why would you want to start by having a jobs/networking app broadcast that you’ve just installed it?
And yes, we get that BeKnown is not just for jobseekers. Companies liable to punish employees for seeking new jobs are unlikely to see that fine distinction. And the app is likely to be thought of as a tool to find jobs for quite some time and likely to cause a bit of a shock to most folks who install it, thinking they’re taking steps to separate their work and personal lives, not bring them closer together.