Get Serious About LinkedIn
If you’re serious about your job search, you need to get serious about LinkedIn. Every time I talk to someone about developing a resume, I ask, “Are you on LinkedIn?”
Many people have heard of it but don’t really understand what it is or how it works. Some are actually on LinkedIn but their page provides almost no information. And others don’t have a clue.
In today’s fast-changing world, technology is a driving force. It affects how you look for work. And one of the best technology innovations for job seekers is the social media website, LinkedIn.
Companies now pay to attach to LinkedIn’s network. In the first quarter of 2014, compared with the same period last year, sales grew 46% and are approaching $2 Billion annually. They wouldn’t keep paying the money if they weren’t getting a good return on their investments.
It’s Where the Recruiters Go
LinkedIn is the place recruiters and hiring managers go to find great candidates. More often than they visit job boards. The latest statistics I’ve seen show that 85% of hiring managers and executive recruiters rely on LinkedIn for leads. So you had better be there.
Make Sure Your LinkedIn Profile is Complete
Joining LinkedIn, however, isn’t enough. Your page (profile) has to be done right if it’s going to connect you with recruiters and hiring managers, enhance the effectiveness of your network, and make you easier to find online.
You need start with a great, high-resolution photograph. A professional looking head shot; not a glamour pix. Your face needs to be clearly recognizable and any background should be relevant to your personal brand. For instance, a book with a librarian or a beaker with a lab tech.
List your industry and location (city, state or area). Show your current position and describe it briefly. Make sure at least two of your employers are listed under experience. Keep your experience relevant to the type of job you’re seeking and don’t go back in your work history more than 10 years or so.
Highlight a minimum of five or six skills and list your education
Create your LinkedIn headline. This should include your name and credentials, be unique to you, and filled with keywords. Emphasize your personal brand and use language that persuades viewers to contact you.
The LinkedIn Summary
The LinkedIn Summary is a very important of your page. It’s the chance to tell your story. It describes you and cannot be applied to anyone else. It is written as a narrative, preferably in first-person (but third-person can also work), flows well, does not duplicate information found elsewhere on your page, and gets readers interested enough to want to learn keep reading.
Sue Montgomery is a Certified Professional Resume Writer & Career Coach with 20+ years of experience creating resumes, cover letters and other tools that market people for the jobs they want. Sue is founder and president of Resume Plus.