LinkedIn has helped many budding professionals launch their careers by connecting them with suitable employers. Intermediate and seasoned white collar professionals have also relied on LinkedIn to search for better-paying jobs. There are also people who struggle networking with potential employers, and it’s usually the result of providing irrelevant information. In most cases, potential employers ignore LinkedIn members with incomplete profiles. Here are some tips on how to make your profile stand out:
1. Upload a professional looking profile photo
LinkedIn encourages new members to upload their images because it increases their credibility in the eyes of potential employers. When human resource managers come across a faceless LinkedIn profile, they quickly assume he or she isn’t interested in establishing career networks. Having a professional looking profile picture always helps you stand out from applicants who either lack a profile picture, or uploaded celebrity images.
Avoid using selfies as your LinkedIn profile photo because some potential employers might assume you have a don’t-care attitude. For the best results, visit a professional photo studio. Remember to dress in formal wear when posing for your LinkedIn profile picture.
2. Indicate your current position
A common mistake from LinkedIn members is failing to update their job profiles. This mistake causes them to miss out on brilliant opportunities for career growth. Also, when employers come across your profile and notice you've served in the same role for more than 5 years, they conclude you lack the motivation to grow your career.
Updating your current position ensures that recruiters can easily spot your profile. You’ll also appear honest when your resume corroborates the information on your LinkedIn profile.
3. Fill in all information under Education
The Education section in your LinkedIn profile helps recruiters and potential employers identify your level of competence. Some LinkedIn members overlook this section because their resumes already contain their academic qualifications. But human resource managers prefer complete LinkedIn profiles, because it helps them obtain all the information they need on a simple scan through.
You also stand to benefit from referrals by fellow alumni. LinkedIn uses various methods to connect professionals who attended the same colleges and high schools. Imagine the advantage you gain if a recruiter who attended the same university you did comes across your profile when combing through various job applications.
4. List the industry you work in
Recruiters on LinkedIn use a variety of search filters when searching for ideal job candidates. One of these search parameters is Industry. LinkedIn members who have provided correct industry information in their profiles usually appear in the recruiters’ top search results. This gives them an edge over other LinkedIn members who might be more qualified for the job, but don’t appear in the recruiter’s search results.
Always remember to make changes to your Industry information in the event you switch to a different field. It helps you to connect with the right recruiters.
5. Provide your correct location
Did you know that LinkedIn members who disclose their town or city of residence receive 23 times more exposure in search results? If, for example, a recruiter is looking to hire accountants based in Atlanta, Georgia, they will use the Location filter to search accountants living there. Providing correct geographical locations secures an advantage over seasoned professionals, because recruiters only interview candidates on their search results.
LinkedIn also uses a variety of algorithms to connect professionals who work in the same industry and city.
6. List all your professional skills
Recruiters evaluate potential employees based on their work experience and skill sets. To stand out from your competitors, you need to list at least five skills in your LinkedIn profile. Doing so enhances your profile’s credibility in the eyes of potential employers. Recruiters also use skill parameters as a filter when searching for suitable employees to hire in their respective cities. Listing your professional skills helps them understand what benefits they gain by employing you.
LinkedIn allows members to update their list of professional skills frequently. Take advantage of this feature to boost your visibility in search results.
7. Sell your achievements on your LinkedIn profile
Your LinkedIn profile provides recruiters and other professionals within your network a snapshot of what you have to offer. Some LinkedIn members fail to create suitable first impressions because they provide ambiguous information. This leaves potential employers confused, and they move on to the next applicant.
You can wow the recruiters who come across your profile by providing a precise summary of your career achievements. If you served in a management role, you could include a sentence in your profile that says, “I exceeded my previous company’s annual sales targets by 15% when I was in charge of a 10-member sales team.”
8. Build your LinkedIn portfolio
LinkedIn’s portfolio feature helps professionals prove their skills by uploading and sharing previous projects with potential employers. LinkedIn’s search engine favors profiles that contain well-stocked portfolios, because recruiters can accurately assess an applicant’s skill based on previous results. Owning a portfolio eliminates any doubts recruiters may have about the referees listed on your resume.
Make sure to upload exemplary work in your LinkedIn profile. Get in touch with previous employers and clients before uploading your portfolio to ensure they vouch for you when they receive a phone call or email from a potential employer.
9. Avoid indicating irrelevant job history
Do you get intimidated when you check out a friend’s lengthy LinkedIn profile? Most professionals wrongly assume that a lengthy job history automatically grabs recruiters’ attention. What they don’t realize is potential employers are mainly interested in their applicant’s relevant career experience. If you’re a sales manager, you don’t need to provide details about your experience as a junior accountant. Instead, you should provide recruiters with information about your previous marketing job duties while working in various companies.
10. Actively seek for recommendations
Your LinkedIn profile is just like another version of your professional resume. The more credible people can vouch for you, the better chances you have of impressing potential employers. Recommendations enhance your portfolio’s credibility because recruiters can get in touch with LinkedIn members who’ve posted recommendations on your profile.
One way of obtaining favorable recommendations is by sending emails to friends and previous employers containing links to your LinkedIn profile. Remember to send up follow up emails because some recipients might forget to check out your profile.
11. Post status updates frequently
Many LinkedIn members rarely post status updates on LinkedIn profiles. Some avoid this feature because they fear being misinterpreted by recruiters. However, utilizing this feature regularly works the same wonders as having a loaded portfolio. Frequent LinkedIn status updates convince recruiters that you’re interested in your industry’s current affairs. It also displays a level of self-confidence that resonates well with potential clients.
You can start by coming up with a monthly schedule to help you post regular and timely status updates. The second step requires researching your industry’s current affairs, and writing brief but informative articles that contain unique insights.
12. Use descriptive keywords in your profile’s headline
Recruiters on LinkedIn use specific keywords when searching for particular professionals. LinkedIn ranks search results based on related keywords contained in members profile headlines. It may seem okay just to provide your official job title. However, there are thousands of other members who've used the same description. The best approach is researching which descriptive terms recruiters type into LinkedIn’s search engine.
Lastly, you can find an infographic from this blog entitled “12 Tips to Make a LinkedIn Profile Employers Will Love” which provides some useful tips on how to optimize your LinkedIn profile and points out the possible mistakes to avoid.
Did we miss any pointers? Let us know in the comments below!