With data being readily available anytime, anywhere, it is no longer optional to casually monitor your online presence, but to do so regularly. Your digital identity can impact your potential to land a dream job, and affect how others view you as a person. How can job seekers understand how their digital identities are influencing the ways recruiters view them? Is there an efficient way for people to effectively control their online reputation?
To understand how job seekers manage their digital identity, my team and I conducted research to map out some of the thought processes of active job seekers. We were also curious about some of the processes recruiters follow to search for information pertaining to candidates.
 Observations of recruiters and job seekers to identify their thought processes.
 Identify how recruiters find online content about job candidates.
 Identify how job seekers manage their online identity.
 Conduct interviews to learn about personal experiences with recruiting, and the management of digital identity.

Process flow of digital identity management derived from observations.

To understand how job seekers manage their digital identity, and how recruiters assess candidates, we conducted research to map out both processes. We were curious to learn about the similarities and differences between the two processes.
For this project, we created a flowchart of the decision processes from the perspective of both a recruiter and a job seeker. We then created personas of a recruiter and job seeker, followed by designing journey maps, to illustrate similarities and differences.

Recruiter persona developed upon analysis of observation and interview findings.

From our observation-based investigation of some local recruiters and job seekers, we found that:
Having online content revealing positive traits about you, are just as influential as not having any negative content online.
Social media presence such as LinkedIn, boosts 'hireability' and online reputation.
Managing social media and performing Google searches, are prominent ways of managing online reputation.

Experience map of a job seeker created upon observations and interviews.

From this project, one major takeaway was that nowadays, everyone must have some type of presence online to be successful with job searching. Not having any web presence can be just as detrimental as having negative online content. This implies that careful management of one's digital identity is vital for success in job searching.
Overall, we conducted interviews of recruiters and job seekers, created personas, and designed journey maps, as we sought to understand their perspectives of digital identity. From this research, we learned that:
LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter are the most salient social media platforms used by both recruiters and job seekers.
For non-design positions, social media takes precedence over online portfolios.
Self-management is the preferred way of monitoring and maintaining identity, rather than through a management service.

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