Turbocharge your LinkedIn Profile
With LinkedIn operating as the world’s largest professional network on the Internet with more than 465 million members (Nov 2016) in over 200 countries and territories, it’s now more important than ever to make sure that you’re standing out and making a lasting impression.
Traditionally, a job hunt included seeing a job that you’re interested, in putting together a relevant cover note and send your CV through to a recruitment consultant with the hope of being called back with good news: an invite to an interview. Nowadays however, having a good CV and cover note isn’t enough anymore with the ever changing digital world. Now your social presences are making more of an impact than you’d think.
When I receive a candidate’s CV, after looking through all details, my next step is to check out their social media presence, in particular their LinkedIn profile, as it’s the perfect way of finding out more about you. Here, publicly available, I can see recommendations (should you have any) and how professional you come across. Very valuable additional insights into the professional “you”.
Employers have the same access and they often specifically ask for my opinion of your LinkedIn presence and also the links to see for themselves. So you see: it’s important that you’ve got an all star profile. That’s why I’ve put together a simple guide on how to create an amazing LinkedIn profile. Read on for some pointers which will help you get noticed.
My top 10 tips of having an amazing LinkedIn profile are:
1. Include a professional photo. If you add your photo to your LinkedIn profile, your profile may result in 14x more views compared to a profile without a photo and 36x more likely to receive a message.
2. Give yourself a strong headline outlining exactly what it is you do. It’ll give you a professional identity.
3. Add your skills and get endorsements to show what you can do.
4. Ask to be recommended by previous colleagues & clients. A visual reference will be very appealing to potential employers.
5. Include keywords in your summary so that you’ll come up in searches. LinkedIn offers many opportunities to include appropriate keywords for your job search and career. It would be wise to take advantage as LinkedIn is a very large database of profiles that uses key fields to order the entire collection of data. In that way you make yourself visible for potential headhunters. Even if you are not actively looking, who knows what offer could knock on your door if you make sure that you can be found.
6. If you’re a volunteer, add in your experience! Hiring managers (42%) who use LinkedIn believe that emphasizing volunteer experience on a profile is just as important as highlighting a formal working background.
7. Fill in all your details and make sure it’s all up to date. For example, your profile is 15 times more likely to be viewed by adding the industry you work in and 10 times more likely to be viewed if you add your education.
8. Turn off your activity whilst you’re updating your profile. It’s easily done. You simply go to ‘Settings’, and under ‘Privacy Controls’, you should be able to see ‘Turn on/off your activity broadcasts’. Why? This prevents notifications about the fact that you are making updates, in case you don’t want co-workers, bosses, executives, customers or anybody else to see that you are updating your profile or making recommendations.
9. Be specific about your education. It will get noticed.
10. Don’t be afraid to get personal – but not too personal. Here it’s important to get the balance right. Potential employers should be able to get a full understanding of you as a person, both professionally and personally. This will help them with a starting point, to gauge if you are a good cultural fit. Adding in details about your hobbies, likings and joining groups that relate to your out of work interests is a great way of making yourself more relatable and potential employers want to get to know you on both levels and you never know it could even spark conversation and interest.
It is just as important to be active with your outreach and make sure that you’re engaging with the relevant connections within your network and utilising LinkedIn to it’s full potential. In order to make sure you’re on the front foot follow these 3 easy steps:
Step 1: Invite people to connect – When sending requests to connect with people, personalise it, outline who you are and why you’d like to connect with them it’ll give them an understanding of what you’re looking to do and you’re more likely to get accepted.
Step 2: Join relevant LinkedIn groups – Ensure they are related to your job and what you’re interested in. Post relevant articles into the group conversations to get noticed you can search by industry. By asking and answering questions and joining group discussions you’ll widen your network.
Step 3: Engage with your connections as much as possible – Make the most of the regular updates, congratulate them on their new jobs, work anniversaries, comment on their posts, give endorsements and recommend them. Don’t be afraid.
By following these tips you can strengthen your chances of getting noticed in a positive way. These are just a few pointers and by no means an exhaustive list.
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