(The Root) — First things first: If you don't know what a Klout score is, you may already be behind the curve in your job search. Klout.com is a service that measures your social media influence online. It is a number between 1-100 that was determined by the company's proprietary algorithm, and is based on factors including your number of Twitter followers and retweets, "Likes" on your Facebook status updates, comments on Google Plus and connections and recommendations on LinkedIn. Information from Foursquare and Wikipedia is also taken into account. As other social media networks become popular (think Instagram and Pinterest), they have a good chance of being added to the list as well.
While there has been a lot of controversy behind how your Klout score is determined — details about the algorithm are sketchy at best — some employers have still decided that the metric is a valuable part of your job qualifications. San Francisco-based company Salesforce.com recently came under scrutiny for a job listing that required, among other things, a minimum Klout score of 35.
This becomes problematic for a number of reasons. First, since the methods for calculating your Klout score are still so questionable, employers should be erring on the side of caution when considering it as a viable part of your job qualifications. Also, it is fairly easy to falsely boost your score, with fake Twitter followers and phony Facebook likes readily available for sale online.
In today's world where everyone is a brand, I do believe it is important for you to have a social media presence. But should that presence determine whether or not you get hired? What do you think?
Follow tech-life expert Stephanie Humphrey on Twitter.