With technology and social media evolving every day, paper resumes are falling to the wayside. Use LinkedIn to present a well-rounded snapshot of who you are, what you can do and why you fit a given position, and get your virtual resume in front of people who have the power to hire you.
Complete Your Profile
The first step in using LinkedIn to your advantage is to create a profile. A majority of recruiters use LinkedIn to source to employees, and you don’t want to be passed over if you can’t be found on the platform.
“Create a professional profile that’s aligned with your resume,” says Christine Karel, social media manager for Globe University. “A hiring manager will often cross-reference the two, and the last thing you want to do is confuse them.”
Your profile should reflect your resume, but it should be a place for you to expand a bit more.
“A LinkedIn profile is like a supercharged resume. You want to paint a clear picture to show how you are an expert in the field,” says Karel. “Use videos, projects and PowerPoints to reinforce examples of your work, volunteering and organizational involvement. Everyone loves visuals.”
Karel also says that your LinkedIn profile should reflect your overall personality, allowing potential employers to see who you are.
Build a Professional Brand
It’s not enough to simply have a LinkedIn profile, but you must be strategic. Karel says the way to be seen by employers is to have a professionally branded profile.
“Your goal should be to get pulled on the first page of any search, so make sure your profile is search engine optimized with the right keywords,” she says. “Your headline should portray your professional industry, your summary should describe the value you offer, and your experience and skills should highlight your career and educational achievements.”
Karel says your skills and groups can also get you pulled in crucial search results, so it’s important to have your profile fully complete.
“Fill in all 50 skills and follow all 50 groups allowed, including those that are industry-specific to showcase your expertise, and those that reflect your personal interests and subjects you want to learn more about,” she says.
Connect with Decision-Makers
LinkedIn is the only place where you can get in front of important people in your industry. Karel says this is a unique opportunity that everyone should take advantage of.
“This is a chance to rub elbows with decision-makers. Where else can you do that?” she says.“This is not a place to be shy. Make a name for yourself, but remember this is not Facebook. Only share professional updates.”
Karel says in order to be seen by these influencers, you must be active.
“Follow companies that are aligned with your job search, and comment and engage with them,” she says.
LinkedIn is a tool that can be used to maximize your job search. If you create a strategic profile, build a professional brand and connect with decision-makers in your industry, you’ll have an advantage over the competition. To learn more about Globe University and career support services visit www.globeuniversity.edu/about-us/career-services.