Want to know how successful you'll be at your job? Consider asking someone to analyze your Facebook profile. In a new study, a university professor and two students rated the profiles of 56 employed college students, grading them on characteristics such as "dependability" and "emotional stability." Six months later, researchers compared those ratings to employee evaluations by the students' supervisors, and found that job performance was strongly correlated to scores for conscientiousness, agreeability, and intellectual curiosity, the Wall Street Journal reports.
After looking at pictures, wall posts, comments, and other information contained on the profiles, raters tended to give better evaluations to the Facebookers who traveled and had more friends and diverse hobbies. And the raters did not necessarily give worse evaluations to those who partied: Evaluators actually scored those with party pics as friendly and extroverted. The study shows that Facebook could be a useful job-screening tool, particularly because candidates would have difficulty "faking it" on Facebook, the lead researcher explains. But using Facebook thusly is legally murky, and employers may be wary of it.