Discuss the ways in which an authentic online professional profile can be developed.
There are various ways that an authentic profile can be developed. In my opinion the most effective way to build an authentic worthwhile profile is on LinkedIn.
LinkedIn is a great resource as the majority of services on it are there to help you build an identity that looks the part for employers, as well as highlighting key skills through the use of endorsements e.g. communication skills.
For example it encourages users to upload CV’s to their profile, and read relevant news articles about your desired industry. This directed further reading that you can do around your profile will definitely help when it comes to interviews and assessment centres, as the articles are relevant and up to date.
However building an online authentic online profile cannot be done with a single service. In order to build a complete profile you need to use a variety of services with a consistent set of goals to portray the image you want.
A twitter account can be very useful to enhance a professional profile; it can even be linked with LinkedIn by using the #in. You can use them in harmony to post about useful links, or articles online that interest you. Employers find this appealing, as it shows a real interest in the industry.
An interesting statistic that I found relevant to this topic is that 75% of HR departments are now required to screen job requirements online.  I thought this figure would be high, but not this high. Employers are also reported to be more worried if they don’t find anything about you on the web.
Did you have any online presence 10 years ago?
The importance of the profile being the best is can be, is due to the fact that competition for jobs is now on a global scale. 
15 years ago a job application would have involved posting your CV to your employer’s physical location. Now application forms are done online, often before a CV is required. After these stage is when online profiles will be scanned.
The research completed by JISC also mentioned the blurring between “’real’ and ‘virtual’, public and private”.
This is a danger that we have to look out for, as more and more people are blurring these lines, especially public and private. Users posting all 500 of their holiday photos on Facebook is fine, but you have to remember that everyone can see these, and that maybe certain photos would be better kept private.
If like me you’ve already got LinkedIn and Twitter accounts the current issue is maintaining these profiles in a professional manner, and at the same time not blurring the private and public lines.
This YouTube video highlights how in years to come this could be the undoing of our future career paths.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A2bniFJigI0\
Personally I let my Facebook profile go a little as the privacy settings are set so that only friends can see my information. As I primarily use this service for social interaction.
In conclusion building an authentic online professional profile is a constant process. It is not possible to complete it, and in order to benefit from having one (job prospects) new content must be professionally written and updated at regular intervals.
 Cross tab Marketing Services Survey – In Lisa Harris PowerPoint