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Do They Find You on Facebook? Facebook Profile Picture and Hiring Chances

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  • Baert, Stijn

    (Ghent University)

Abstract

We investigate whether the publicly available information on Facebook about job applicants affects employers' hiring decisions. To this end, we conduct a field experiment in which fictitious job applications are sent to real job openings in Belgium. The only characteristic in which these candidates differ is the unique Facebook profile that can be found online with their name. Candidates with the most beneficial Facebook picture obtain approximately 39% more job interview invitations compared to candidates with the least beneficial picture. In addition, we find suggestive evidence for a higher effect of Facebook profile picture appearance on hiring chances when candidates are highly educated and when recruiters are female.

Suggested Citation

  • Baert, Stijn, 2015. "Do They Find You on Facebook? Facebook Profile Picture and Hiring Chances," IZA Discussion Papers 9584, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp9584
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. S. Baert & L. Decuypere, 2014. "Better sexy than flexy? A lab experiment assessing the impact of perceived attractiveness and personality traits on hiring decisions," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 21(9), pages 597-601, June.
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    6. Dan-Olof Rooth, 2009. "Obesity, Attractiveness, and Differential Treatment in Hiring: A Field Experiment," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 44(3).
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    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    attractiveness; hiring; screening; Facebook; Internet; personality;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C93 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Field Experiments
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J79 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination - - - Other
    • L86 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Information and Internet Services; Computer Software

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