Maximize Your LinkedIn Job Search: Make the Most of Your Profile

February 8, 2013

Job Hunt, Social Media

Get Hired Fast - linkedin job searchOne of the important parts of LinkedIn is your profile. You need to create an excellent profile to present a good first impression; however, it is possible to make mistakes on your profile that could hurt your chances for employment. Here are some thoughts about making your profile eye-catching but not off-putting – a good profile will help your LinkedIn job search.

Create a Catchy Summary

It is important to include a summary in your profile. When creating the text, you should use as many of the 2000 characters available. You should break it up into header and sub-headers for easier scanning. The content of the summary should discuss your accomplishments and tell a story. Sometimes including an experience with results in the summary is a way to grab attention up front. You also need to include keywords that recruiters may use to search in your summary – this will cause your profile to pop up during searches.

Include your Experience

You need to be strategic about the experience you include in your profile. Every job you ever had – like babysitter or fry cook at age 15 – may not be helpful for future employers. But you don’t want to skimp on your job history, include all relevant positions. If you don’t have a job currently, you can indicate that you are looking for a position or you can even note that you are “self-employed.” Include volunteer opportunities in your experience listing – many employers appreciate the skills and fortitude that volunteering entails.

Make sure you have descriptive details on your job experience listings. You want to tell people what your duties were and what type of skills you may have acquired.

Additional Information

In this section, you can list groups that you have joined on LinkedIn, your Twitter account, your company website or blog, and any other sites that provide professional information about you. You can also include outside groups and organizations that you are a member of, some of your interests, and any honors and awards that you have received. This section is another opportunity for your profile to come up in a recruiter’s job search but remember to keep all information professional.

Recommendations

You need to have some recommendations on your profile and the best way to get good recommendations is to write some for your friends and colleagues. However, you don’t want over-the-top recommendations because they appear fake. You also don’t want people who you do not know well to write recommendations for you; you can approve the recommendations that you receive. If you don’t feel that one is helpful, you can block it from appearing on your profile.

Things to Omit

We have looked at what to include on your profile. Here are a few things that you should leave out:

  • Unprofessional photos
  • Complete birthdates
  • Links to personal nonprofessional websites

You also have to consider what may come up on a Google search of your name. Some of the information may make it easier for someone to find old damaging information about you. Think about whether your Twitter account or Facebook page may open the door to information that you don’t want employers to have.

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