If you’re on the job hunt, a professional working in industry or simply a student wanting to make a good impression when entering the workforce, it can be guaranteed that companies, recruiters or even colleagues have probably tried looking you up online. Today was of the most common sites that people use for this is LinkedIn, a brilliant tool used by both companies and individuals to showcase themselves and what they’re about. This is especially used in recruitment as it allows us to see what candidates work in or what they are looking to work in. If you are a user of LinkedIn or you plan to start using it, check out our 5 top tips that will help you make your profile shine!
- Choose the right profile photo
When it comes to any social media platform the first thing that people see when they look up your profile is your profile photo, and LinkedIn is no different! Choose a clear, approachable and professional photo. This doesn’t mean that it has to be taken by a professional photographer but merely that the photo you use should be appropriate and smart, in other words don’t use a photo you took on a night out partying. For guidance you can always look at other people’s profile to see what they do, but whatever you choose you will never go wrong with a smile!
- Put the time into your profile
When recruiters look you up on LinkedIn, one of the first things we notice is if someone has put effort into their profile. You don’t need to add in too much detail, but making sure to include information in all of the different sections is important, such as education experience etc. Treat it as if it is an online CV to an extent, if you are describing your experience try to add a few sentences or bullet points to describe what your role is and any accomplishments you want to highlight, doing this also for education and so on. This helps recruiters and other viewers understand more about your role, particularly if your job title is a little vague. Another important section to include is a summary at the top of your profile as this is where viewers will look to first. This can be used to include what’s interesting about you, what you are interested in or even if you are interested in new job opportunities, you never know that sentence or paragraph alone could be what makes a recruiter approach you about your dream job!
- Create a custom URL
If you want your profile to come up in searches on LinkedIn or you want to publicize your profile effectively, making a custom URL for your profile is key! This will have the format linkedin.com/yourname or similar, instead of a bunch of numbers. To make this, go to your profile and click “Edit public profile & URL” in the top right hand corner. In the new window that opens, click “Edit URL” in the top right corner. Once you choose what you want to change the URL to, click save and you’re done!
- Connect to the right people and companies
Part of using LinkedIn is so you can share and have access to news and updates from people and companies that you are interested in, it differs to other social media platforms as it is a professional platform. When creating your profile you are building a brand that represents you and so a way of continuing to build that brand and gain access to information that interests you is by connecting to the right people. There’s no need to accept every single person that adds you on LinkedIn, or similarly add every person you know including people you haven’t spoken to in years, unless you have a reason to connect to them such as a common interest. The choosier you are with this, the more interesting and relevant your LinkedIn will be for you.
- Keep your profile up to date
OK, so you’ve put all the effort into your profile, it looks great and you’re happy with it. Then a year goes by and you’ve changed jobs, country or have completed a new course. Even though your profile might still look great, it is now out of date as you haven’t bother to include any of the new information. It is important to take some time every few months to look at your profile and update it, it doesn’t need to be a major re-vamp but keeping it current is important, particularly if you are looking for a new job.