Finding New Work: Five Ways a LinkedIn Profile Can Help

Your LinkedIn profile is a chance to showcase credentials in much more dynamic ways than a CV.

With more than 450 million members and an ever-increasing number of hiring managers using it, LinkedIn has established itself as a central platform through which job hunters find new career opportunities.

For those of you who are on the move professionally, here are five ways your LinkedIn Profile can help you land a dream job.

Boost Your Profile

Your LinkedIn profile is a chance to showcase professional credentials in much more dynamic ways than a CV ever could. Through your profile, you can back up words with videos, samples of previous work and presentations that creatively showcase skills and experience.

The basics of the profile are equally important, and should include a brief yet compelling career summary, as well as a past experience section that details accomplishments during former employment. Focus on significant jobs that have shaped your career, and feel free to leave out past experiences that aren’t relevant to the line of work you’re currently seeking.

Additionally, specify the skills that set you apart. This will encourage your connections to endorse you for these skills, further strengthening your profile.

Connect. Connect. Connect.

Networking is the essence of LinkedIn usage, and building a strong portfolio of contacts is paramount.

However, there are some conflicting modes of thinking in this regard. Some people argue that building the largest LinkedIn network possible is essential, because it highlights that a professional is well connected and influential.

The other side of the argument suggests that a strong network is not determined by numbers, but rather by quality and relevance of connections. In this instance, the focus is on connecting with key influencers you know in a specific industry.

Regardless of the approach, first impressions count, so when sending your connect request scrap the default “I’d like to add you to my professional network on LinkedIn” message. Instead, tailor the note. This highlights effort and professionalism on your part.

Follow Companies You Want to Join

There are millions of company pages on LinkedIn, and many of these will be businesses that you can see yourself working for in the future. Follow them. Not only will this ensure you are up-to-date with all the key developments at these companies, but you will also be among the first to know when a job opening that may suit you becomes available.

Furthermore, company pages will also highlight which, if any, of your LinkedIn contacts work for that business. This is an ideal way of getting your foot in the door at what could be your dream job.


Get Recommendations

LinkedIn recommendations do more than simply validate your qualifications. By appearing on the profile page of the person writing them, they also expand your reach.

Recommendations should back up your career summary and detail your unique skills and achievements, ideally on specific projects.

Tread with caution when approaching current colleagues for a recommendation, however, as this could give away the fact you are seeking new employment. Instead, approach past colleagues with whom you have collaborated on successful projects.

Perhaps the best way of gaining LinkedIn recommendations is by writing them for others. Past colleagues who receive your vote of confidence will not only be grateful, they will be more inclined to return the favor.


Customize Your Public Profile URL

The Uniform Research Locator (URL) associated with your LinkedIn account is a custom web address for your page. Amending the default URL provides a chance to catapult your profile to the top of Google searches for your name, making it easier for prospective employers to find you. A custom URL is essentially another opportunity to customize your profile and help it stand out.

The majority of LinkedIn users do not have a custom URL, so this is a great chance to showcase yourself as a savvy LinkedIn user. The process of customizing your LinkedIn URL can be done in a few easy steps.