We’ve all heard of LinkedIn. By now you likely have a profile, have sent out a few invites, maybe filled in a few of the info fields. But are you really using it to find your next job?
LinkedIn is simply the most powerful tool out there for finding a job. There is nothing that beats networking, and LinkedIn is the perfect synthesis of online and offline networking. It’s even more important than your resume! So take these tips, implement all of them, and get on your way to finding your next great job!
- Personalize your profile URL.
- Get a MINIMUM of 5 recommendations with at least one from every job you have held. Write unsolicited recommendations for co-workers as well. Chances are they will return the favor.
- Connect to everyone you meet, immediately after meeting them.
- Set you public profile to visible. The more open your profile, the likelier you are to get found in a search.
- Create a headline for yourself, beyond your job title.
- Include a link to your profile in your resume. It extends the amount of time you spend in front of a potential hiring manager, and gives them an opportunity to learn more about you. LinkedIn is all about maintaining image control, within a social context.
- Find where your former co-workers are working & reach out to them to see if there are openings at their current companies.
- Download a.csv of your contacts and email out a short & simple blast, letting your network know you are in a search. People need to know you are looking for a job. Your friend’s recommendation could be critical to getting you in front of the line at HR, getting you noticed, and getting you.
- Skip HR – find the hiring manager. Run a search through the companies network once you’ve seen a posting, and try to figure out who your future boss might be. If you know someone in common, ask your connection to forward your info along. If you don’t know someone in common, introduce yourself to the manager. It’s risky, but the rewards are worth it.
- Add keywords that a recruiter might use in a search to your Summary & Specialties section. Make sure to include specific technologies. The trick here is to think about how you would find yourself in a database. Programmer? Then you probably want to put SQL somewhere on your LinkedIn page. SEO yourself and get found!
- Link everything: Twitter to status updates. Add your blog. SlideShare presentations. Amazon reading list. Everything. An integrated social persona is absolutely critical in the new era of job hunting.
- Post INSIGHTFUL comments on discussion boards, and try to get several ‘Best Answers’ under your belt.
- Starting a group is a great way to get exposure as well. Think of a niche you fill, and start the conversation.
- Be as complete as possible and make sure your profile matches EXACTLY with the content on your resume. Can’t say this enough – if there is a disconnect between your profile and your resume, HR will toss you.
- Include a professional picture in your profile. A headshot generally works.
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