Modern recruiters often check out social media channels to locate and research potential job candidates. They might be searching for these candidates by mutual connections, industry, job title or even hashtags related to the field. But there's one key group hiring managers might be missing in their search: workers who talk about hating their jobs.
According to a recent study by Monster.com and social intelligence company Brandwatch, U.S. workers mentioned the phrase "hate my job" more than 201,000 times on Twitter between March 2014 and March 2015, including 8,051 tweets with the hashtag #ihatemyjob. Other popular hashtags associated with negative-sentiment tweets about jobs include #fml ("f--- my life"), #thestruggle and #worksucks.
In terms of demographics, 61 percent of negative job posts were written by women, versus just 39 percent by men. Retail and food service workers dislike their jobs most: More than 55 percent of "hate my job" posts came from people in these two industries. There was also a higher ratio of "hate my job" versus "love my job" posts coming from Eastern states, with Florida, West Virginia and Delaware taking the top three spots.
While the total number of "love my job" tweets (942,000 in a year) far outweighed the number of "hate my job" tweets, Joanie Courtney, senior vice president of global market insights for Monster, said that looking into these negative posts could benefit companies that want to improve satisfaction among existing employees, as well as those looking to recruit workers who are unhappy in their current positions.
"Companies [can] learn from these negative job tweets and translate that knowledge into growing and engaging talent in their careers and, in turn, move the 'love-hate' needle," Courtney told Business News Daily. "[It] also allows hiring managers to take advantage of talented people on Twitter who may not be satisfied with their job and utilize their skills for a new opportunity to find something better."
In another Business News Daily article, Bob Myhal, CEO of recruiting platform NextHire, said that, in today's job market, it's far more important for recruiters to be proactive and tap into the growing pool of "passive candidates" — workers who aren't necessarily seeking a job but are open to new opportunities. Engaging this group on social media by following them or reaching out to them on occasion may help an employer's case when it comes time to actively recruit.
Workers who publicly post about disliking their job may indeed draw attention from recruiters, but, much like candidates who trash talk an ex-employer during an interview, you might not want the ones who are too vocal about their negative opinions at your organization.
"With the convenience and ability to constantly share important events and information in your life, it is easy to think that how you feel about your job can be included in those discussions," Courtney said. "Sometimes, people may become too casual with social media because they think either no one's really reading their feed, or they don't see the harm in sharing — or, even worse, they hate their job so much that they don't care. [But] negative tweets about their job or employer ... could haunt them and impact their career."
The Monster/Brandwatch survey was based on an analysis of 1.1 million U.S. tweets posted over the course of a year to discover when, where and why people discuss how they feel about their jobs on Twitter. To download the full report, visit Monster.com.
Nicole Fallon received her Bachelor's degree in Media, Culture and Communication from New York University. She began freelancing for Business News Daily in 2010 and joined the team as a staff writer three years later. She currently serves as the assistant editor. Reach her on Twitter.