If you want to get a job, you need to be on LinkedIn, as 94% of recruiters and hiring managers use LinkedIn to identify the best fit passive or active candidates for their job openings, according to a report on 2015 job recruitment trends. Ninety-four percent!
Whenever I needed to fill a position, whether in IT, marketing, finance – you name it, I used LinkedIn two ways. First, I posted the job through a paid LinkedIn job posting. That always netted me hundreds of qualified resumes. Secondly, I searched for passive candidates – people who weren’t necessarily looking, but who were open to an interesting opportunity if it came to them.
LinkedIn is the social networking site where professionals all throughout the world hang out, so it’s where you’ll build the network you will need not just to get a job, but to gain recognition in your profession.
Five Ways to use LinkedIn to Get a Job: First Optimize Your Profile
#1 Make your Headline Searchable – NEVER write “looking for a new opportunity,” or other language that advertises your unemployment. Think about it: would a recruiter ever enter “unemployed” into the search bar? Of course not. If you want to be found, write a headline that uses the keywords that someone would search for you on . The majority of profiles I see contain headlines with no more than the individual’s name and current job title. Worse yet, the headline shows the industry as that of the current employer, not your function within it. This is about YOU, people, not your employer! Here’s an example – a senior level financial executive’s profile headline simply says, Senior Financial Director, Mining & Metals. His employer is a mining and metals company. His industry is Finance. He needs to revise his headline.
#2 Don’t use a selfie! Far too many people upload selfies where they are peering into their laptops, and it just looks awful. You don’t need to spend money on a photographer; just ask a friend to snap a smartphone pic. Dress in the type of attire that your profession expects, look directly at the camera and SMILE! You want to come across as approachable, yet professional. And don’t skip the photo to avoid the hassle; profiles with photos get far more attention than those without one.
#3 Get a customized URL. LinkedIn offers a free vanity URL, so get one and use it in your contacts.
# 4 Brand Yourself Your summary should be a first-person expansion of the professional branding statement on your resume. You have 2000 characters to play with here, so you should approach writing it as though you were answering the recruiter’s question, “tell me about yourself.” length. Expand on your professional brand, and don’t forget to enumerate your accomplishments.
#5 Use the entire LinkedIn toolkit Worked on a great presentation, either solo or as part of a team? Upload it (remove any confidential data first, of course). Have a video clip of you making a presentation? It goes in your profile. LinkedIn allows you to upload a variety of media that showcases your talent, so be creative about what you post. Don’t let inertia prevent you from taking this additional step; it will get you noticed.
On February 12 at 12:30 PM ET, I’ll publish “Getting a Job Using LinkedIn Contacts,” where I’ll share strategies for using LinkedIn to get a job via networking.
Need help writing the LinkedIn profile that will help you get a job? Let’s talk