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This continues a series on advice for new top editors in Digital First Media newsrooms.

I hardly care about a job candidate’s résumé or the clips she sends me. That’s the story she wants me to know. What I’m interested in is the more complete story I can learn about her online.

When you’re hiring journalists, you need to conduct an extensive examination of their digital footprints.

Check social media

Social media use tells you a lot about a journalist. First, if a journalist isn’t even on Twitter or Facebook, that will raise significant concerns about his suitability for a Digital First newsroom. Beyond that, how they use social media will tell you a lot about their journalism. For one thing, social media posts are nearly always unedited. If you want to look at a reporter’s raw copy, Twitter and Facebook are great places to find it.

If you’d like a chance to watch a job candidate in action, look to see whether he has done some livetweeting events and/or crowdsourcing. You will see resourcefulness if she is resourceful. You will see how she relates to the community, whether she is engaging or aloof, arrogant or fun.

I like it when I see a journalist who can show some personality and still behave professionally. Personality is, after all, part of being social. (more…)

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This continues a series on advice for new top editors in Digital First Media newsrooms.

Editors don’t succeed based on our own work. We succeed or fail based on the work of our staffs. So hiring is one of the most important jobs you will do as an editor, an opportunity to upgrade your newsroom. Hire an outstanding, self-starting journalist and you will bask in the glow of his or her work. If you hire someone who is careless in verifying facts, he or she will damage the credibility of your organization.

Hiring has always been an important job for an editor. It is doubly so in a time when most newsroom staffs are shrinking and when news organizations are changing their priorities and processes to meet the challenges and opportunities of the digital marketplace.

Each position you get to fill is an opportunity to add important skills to your news staff and to bring in someone who will quicken the pace of your newsroom’s digital transformation. (more…)

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I have recently gained experience from both sides in job-hunting in digital journalism.

First I spent nine months looking for my next gig, landing at TBD as Director of Community Engagement. So I studied the issue from the hunter perspective. More recently I have filled five positions on my community-engagement team (hope to fill one more position before long). I have screened more than 100 applicants and interviewed more than a dozen. (more…)

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