Hiring someone

Using information on someone's social media profile when hiring

Avoid using information that’s on someone’s social media profile to decide whether you interview or hire them.

You might be breaking the law, particularly if either of the following points apply:

  • they did not agree to you using the information in this way
  • you looked at some applicants’ social media profiles, but not others

For example, while using Facebook you discover the profile of someone who has applied to you for a job as a personal assistant. You notice a picture of her with 2 toddlers in a pushchair and think she looks too young to be a mum.

You’ve now already started making a judgement – even if you did not intend to – about whether she’s the best applicant for the job.

If you then decide not to interview her and she discovered you’d seen her profile, she could argue that your decision discriminated against her because of her sex or age.

Information on jobs and business networking sites

When recruiting, you can usually use information that someone puts on a jobs website, or a business social networking site such as LinkedIn.

When posting information on these sites, users will be aware that the purpose is to show their work experience and professionalism. You must still make sure that you use this information in a way that does not discriminate.