Managing Your Online Reputation
Your online reputation is part of your story used in your job/internship search and
should be consistent with everything else the employer sees.
You know that employers use the Internet to research
potential job candidates. Thus, a necessary part of
any job or internship search is to create and maintain
a positive online reputation. Use the following steps
to take proactive ownership of your online first
Increase Your Awareness.
Be sure you know what information is or could be
available about yourself online, where it is, and what
impression it may create.
• Search your name (and different versions of it)
on the major search engines, on different social
networks, and sites where you comment. A few
not-so-obvious sites to check: Tumblr, Netflix,
Flickr, Match, Pinterest, Amazon, Yelp.
• Set GoogleAlerts to monitor when your name is
part of searches
• Know the privacy agreement and settings for the
various online communities of which you are a
• Request feedback from peers and professionals on
impressions based on your online presence alone.
What story does it tell? Would they hire you?
• Familiarize yourself with the sites where your
potential colleagues or supervisors gather
and participate online (post articles, join
conversations through comments, etc.)
Protect Your Image.
Ensure potential employers only see information that
conveys a positive image. You do not want them to
question your professionalism, judgment, or ability to
represent their organization. Additionally you do not
want them to question the consistency of your story.
• Adjust the privacy settings for all online accounts.
• Remove content and tags that could negatively
influence a potential employers first impression.
• Hide or delete old accounts that do not best
• Request that information about you posted by
others be removed if you are opposed to it.
Build a Professional Presence.
Present your name, accomplishments, and aspirations
in ways that can be accessible to others.
• Use social networks to create and maintain
a public profile that represents your
accomplishments and a sense of the professional
you are becoming and you are comfortable with
the public seeing.
• Display a copy of your resume and a portfolio of
your accomplishments online.
• Promote your profiles and/or website, e.g. add a
link to your email signature.
• Contribute to conversations relevant to your fields
of interest through media like blogs, LinkedIn
groups, and/or Twitter.
Own Your Presence.
Assert greater control of your online identity by owning
• Create a personal website that serves as a
professional resume and portfolio. Update this
regularly with new content.
• Continue your activities online and watch your
name and professional identity become more
prominent in search engines.
Duke Career Center • studentaffairs.duke.edu/career • 919-660-1050 •
Bay 5, Smith Warehouse, 2nd Floor • 114 S. Buchanan Blvd., Box 90950, Durham, NC 27708