How Social Media Screening Enhances Talent Evaluation

From the founding of the first social media platform in the 90s to the modern age of social media in 2010, online platforms had 970 million users. Over the span of more than a decade, the user base has increased significantly to 4.95 billion users at the end of 2023. It’s clear that social media has become the center of our social connections, and that’s not surprising given the rapid increase in technology and adoption. 

In fact, in 2023 it was estimated that 90% of the world’s data was generated in the previous two years. With so much information being shared online, recruiters and hiring managers need to consider how this data can enhance hiring decisions. 

From talent evaluations to candidate screening, social media is making a large impact by providing an additional layer of information. Candidate screening technology makes it easy to learn more about candidates and ensure that hiring teams are learning everything there is to know about candidates. In this article, we’ll discuss the relationship between talent evaluation and social media screening, and how the two processes ensure a well rounded understanding of each candidate. 

What are Talent Evaluations?

The goal of any hiring process is to hire best fit candidates for roles so they can add value to the business. But, how do hiring teams come to these conclusions, and what methods are best to use? Overall, talent evaluations provide these answers. But, there are a few different kinds of screening and evaluation methods that may result in varying results, depending on what you’re looking for. 

In other words, talent evaluation is the process of assessing and analyzing candidates' skills, qualifications, and experience to determine their suitability for a particular role within an organization. This evaluation typically involves various methods such as reviewing resumes, conducting interviews, administering assessments or tests, and checking references. The goal of talent evaluation is to identify individuals who not only possess the necessary technical abilities but also align with the organization's culture and values, ultimately ensuring the best fit for the job and the company.

Evaluating talent for their personality traits, cognitive abilities, and behavioral tendencies can be helpful in understanding whether candidates will be a good fit. Different kinds of pre-hire assessments can be utilized in order to uncover these insights about a candidate. However, it’s important to keep in mind that these may help hiring teams better understand candidates, but it won’t show them the whole picture. More on that later. 


When evaluating candidates, in addition to their skills, hiring teams are also considering their personality and how a candidate would fit in with the workplace culture. This type of talent assessment is commonly executed with questionnaires that give hiring teams a sense of who the candidate is, beyond standard interview questions and conversations. A few common personality tests include:

Essentially, personality tests assess compatibility between candidates and the company that they may be selected to work for. The issue is that results may not always be reliable—especially when candidates now know how to answer many of these questions to get the results they think the employer wants.


Cognitive tests are commonly used to assess a candidate's problem-solving skills, logical reasoning, memory, attention, and overall cognitive abilities. As a result, these tests provide hiring teams with valuable insights into a candidate's potential to perform well in the role if hired. 

The type of cognitive test given to a candidate will depend on the nature of the job role. For positions that require a strong memory, candidates may be given working memory tests. If a job role is very technical, candidates may be given numerical reasoning tests. 

The caveats with cognitive assessments is that they are narrow in scope and prone to bias. They only test a small portion of someone’s personality and abilities, meaning that the interpretation of results may not accurately reflect the person. In addition, these tests were also created with certain biases, meaning that results for women and People of Color may not be as accurately represented in results as other candidates. 


The third type of assessment used in many talent evaluation processes is a behavioral assessment. As the name suggests, these tests help hiring teams predict how a candidate might behave in certain situations, based on their past experiences, tendencies, and personality traits. Some common methods used in behavioral assessments include:

  • Multiple choice questions or checklists that have designated responses candidates can select from 
  • Open-ended questions in which candidates can write longer, personalized responses
  • Video recordings of the candidate answering basic questions about themselves

Beyond personality tests, there are other ways to evaluate a candidate’s personality traits and workplace competencies. These methods may include role playing exercises, emotional intelligence assessments, and even work samples. 

Like the other forms of talent evaluations, the type or types of behavioral assessment(s) administered usually depends on the nature of the job. For example, for a candidate who is being considered for a sales position, hiring teams may rely on role-playing exercises to determine how the candidate might interact with a hypothetical prospective customer. 

However, online candidate screening can also provide hiring teams with valuable information about a candidate, without the need of additional meetings, interviews, or lengthy evaluations. 

Observing Candidates Through Social Media Screening

While pre-hire assessments are common ways to inform talent evaluations, they are not the only sources to gather insights about candidates. With so many users on social media everyday, it’s not very surprising that 3 in 4 hiring managers use social media to research candidates. And, this method for candidate screening can uncover a lot more about a candidate beyond initial resume reviews, interviews, and assessments. 

Not only is online candidate screening a compliant way to evaluate a candidate’s public content, but it can help hiring teams quickly get a comprehensive understanding of who the candidate is and how they will act at work once they join.. Essentially, resumes, applications, interviews, and assessments are able to provide some information about a candidate, but it doesn’t show the whole picture or answer additional questions that hiring teams may have. 

Fortunately, social media profiles are able to reveal a lot about a person. With almost 5 billion people using social media, and 246 million users in the United States alone, hiring teams are likely to learn more about candidates with the help of an online candidate screening solution reviewing the candidate’s profiles. 

So, how can the information gained from social media screening impact hiring decisions? For starters, positive indications of a high-quality candidate can affirm hiring decisions. Businesses want to ensure that hires mesh well with the current workplace culture or have interests that align with company values. Thanks to social media screening, this type of information is often available and useful for making these decisions.

3 Ways Social Media Screening Assists with Talent Evaluation

As mentioned, talent evaluations allow hiring teams to get to know their candidates and narrow down the candidates in consideration. And, social media screening can help hiring teams discover a lot more information than they get from more traditional screening and assessment methods. Here are a few ways that social media screening can enhance the candidate journey and streamline the hiring process. 

Identify Misconduct Red Flags

Traditionally, most hiring teams relied on background checks and reference checks to identify candidates with misconduct issues. However, because most misconduct doesn’t show up on a traditional background check and most people know how to look their best on a reference check, hiring teams should also consider misconduct indications from other sources, such as social media. 

Social media screening can uncover misconduct red flags or illegal behavior that may not be apparent from a candidate's application or interview. This could include discriminatory comments, sexually explicit posts, or evidence of fraud that indicates a strong risk of misconduct or criminal behavior. Identifying such issues early in the hiring process can help employers avoid risks of workplace misconduct

Look Beyond Resumes and Cover Letters

Leveraging applications, interviews, and pre-hire assessments as part of talent evaluations only show a small piece to the greater puzzle of a candidate. That’s why in 2024, so many companies still struggle with quality of hire. With the addition of social media screening, hiring teams have the ability to learn even more about the people they select for a position. 

Social media screenings provide a glimpse into a candidate's personality, workplace competencies, and even whether they are involved in their community outside of work. With this information, employers can gain insights into whether a candidate aligns with the needs of the company culture, are committed to working with integrity, and whether they possess qualities that are relevant to the role, such as creativity, communication skills, or leadership potential.

Improves the Candidate Experience

According to the 2023 Candidate Experience Benchmark Report, about 35% of North American candidates shared their negative candidate experiences publicly on online platforms. In turn, these actions have the ability to harm a business’s reputation. And, one of the leading reasons in 2023 for a candidate to withdraw from the selection process was due to a lack of respect for their time

So, what does this tell us? This data shows that candidates don’t want the hiring process to drag on and would prefer a shorter time to hire with less actions to take to keep them engaged. So, it’s important for any company to prioritize a positive experience for all candidates as they move through their hiring journey. How? For one, social media screening is a tool that can significantly help.

With social media and online screening, hiring teams can uncover professional attributes as well as misconduct red flags without long waiting periods or the candidate needing to take action. These solutions now provide hiring teams with insights into a candidate’s top positive personality traits, workplace competencies, and even the interview questions that will help hiring teams best get to know each candidate. And, they can do this frictionlessly. This process reduces friction for the candidate while improving time to hire and saving the hiring team valuable time and resources.

What Talent Acquisition Teams Need to Know About Candidate Screening for Talent Evaluation

The bottom line is candidate screening and pre-hire assessments can provide insights into candidates that are helpful during talent evaluations. With this information, hiring teams can narrow down their pool of candidates from a large batch to a select few that not only meet job requirements, but align with business values and goals, as well. 

Additionally, online screening can affirm positive indications of a high-quality candidate, or uncover negative qualities that otherwise wouldn’t have been discovered through talent assessments or interviews. 

Social media screening adds an additional layer of value that helps businesses ensure they are making the right hiring decisions, which improves candidate quality, reduces turnover, and reduces the costs associated with frequent hiring. Plus, software programs for social media screening can take the heavy lifting out of the online candidate screening process, ultimately reducing friction for hiring teams and improving the overall candidate experience. 

To make social media screening easier than ever, Fama has created a new screening tool that quickly and compliantly scans social media profiles to ensure that candidates selected for hiring will be an Instant Fit. To learn more about Instant Fit and AI social media screening technology, reach out to the Fama team to book a demo!