If you are looking for a job you must absolutely be active on LinkedIn and must prepare your profile to do the hard work of job searching for you!
Here are just three reasons.
LinkedIn profiles are incredibly searchable. Try searching your own name and your LinkedIn profile is likely in the top three results. This means that recruiters searching for specific skills or simply doing a background search on your name will find you fast.
If you are applying for any kind of professional work one of the essential key skills today is that you be social media savvy. If your profile is poorly assembled and you have less than 500 connections I am going to seriously question your understanding g of social media.
Many recruiters search for candidates almost exclusively on LinkedIn and if you’re not there, or if you’re poorly presented, you’re not getting hired.
Now let’s talk about the profile.
First things first! Go to your settings and make certain that your profile is completely public and that anyone is able to contact you. I have seen dozens of profiles that openly state that the person is looking for work but they do not accept invitations and do not list a contact email anywhere on their profile – this is not the time to play hard to get.
Your profile should Keyword rich. Meaning if you’re a salesperson then your profile should include the words: sales, account management, business development and any others that are relevant. Recruiters will find you by searching and you must make your profile searchable.
If you are presently employed and you don’t want your employer to know you are looking for work don’t fuss. There are many ways to improve your profile so that you will get approached by recruiters and will most likely impress your current boss too!
Start with a professional quality photo. This means taken for purpose, dressed, as you would normally work, no sunglasses and no children, spouses, pets, cars, teddy bears or whatever else is privately meaningful to you included. I understand you love your – whatever but that is not why I want to hire you! I won’t think it is cute, interesting or that it makes you a better candidate. I will think you trivial and unprofessional and I will simply pass!
Don’t promote your company, promote yourself. The summary portion of your profile is for you to tell your story. Write it in the first person and about your passion for your work. The job section is about your employer and that should contain a statement that reflects your role and the value you bring to the company. Company pages are for company promotion not your personal profile – the exception is if you own your own business.
Don’t list every job you have ever had, list the representative roles. My profile does not mention my paper route or my time at McDonald’s.
There is a space on the bottom of the profile for contact information. If you are actively looking for work be sure to list a personal email address (your employer may monitor your emails) and your personal mobile number. Be sure to leave a professional voice message on your mobile phone.
Ideally, do not list that you are actively looking for work employed looks better. If you must, then create a new job stating that you are accepting temporary contracts whilst searching for a new role – this puts you in control.
Facebook is not part of LinkedIn but while you do a Google search for your own name if your Facebook shows up then instantly go to your Facebook account and make it completely private. I cannot tell you how many seriously compromising photos I have seen that have instantly disqualified the potential candidate.
If you have less than 500 connections then get 500 fast – this blog will show you how:
There are literally 100s of ways to create a truly amazing profile that will really put the power into you job search. These other blogs will help tremendously.
Good luck in your job search!