Salary Survey Extra is a series of dispatches that give added insight into the findings of our annual Salary Survey. These posts contain previously unpublished Salary Survey data.
Save for the pixel-stained wretch tasked with minding the company Facebook and Twitter accounts — along with whatever other apps fall within the organizational social media footprint — it's not typically anyone's specific "job" to engage on social media. There's an extent, however, to which most tech professional have at least a degree of obligation to represent themselves and their employer among the wider IT community.
That sort of thing used to (and still does) happen at conferences and trade shows. Professional interaction is much more readily available via the internet in the digitally diverse world of 2019, on the other hand, and nobody has to arrange plane tickets or pay registration fees to add to the general clamor over various information technology (IT) topics online.
There's also general agreement that creating and maintaining a professional profile on social media can help to advance one's career by providing an outlet to meet and engage with like-minded professionals, express views on tech topics, share IT expertise, and build a reputation among colleagues. If you're not currently doing any of those things, then a new avenue for self-enrichment awaits!
Some people, of course, don't engage with social media on any level (more about that in a moment). Yet because we know that social media matters to many tech types, we included a question about professional engagement on social media in our most recent Salary Survey.
(Note: We also asked about personal engagement on social media, and we even reported those results already. Amusingly, if you refer to that article, you'll see that we didn't recall at the time that we'd asked about both social media circles: personal and professional. Oops. Not only did we ask about both, but those questions quite naturally appeared one after the other on the survey. Perfect we are not.)
Here's what we learned:
Q: Which social media platform do you use most for professional engagement?
LinkedIn — 72.7 percent
I don't do social media. — 17.0 percent
Facebook — 4.4 percent
Twitter — 3.9 percent
Other (Please specify): — 1.3 percent
Instagram — 0.7 percent
There's a clear and unmistakable preference among certified IT professionals who responded to the survey: LinkedIn is what it's at. If you're just getting around to developing your social media profile, then you now have a clear indication of where you should start.
Of course, some people will insist that you shouldn't start at all, and they're not necessarily wrong. There are also quite a few of them: 17 percent of survey respondents don't make social media part of the professional regimen at all.
Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are clearly less effective means of seeking out and engaging with other certified IT professionals. And if you're looking for fresh alternatives to the four specified social media platforms, here are some of the things listed under "Other": Reddit, Xing, Skype, and Whatsapp.