LinkedIn Job Search Tips: 

LinkedIn Job Search Tips

LinkedIn is one of the world’s most popular social network platforms in existence and to this author’s knowledge, the only social media platform that is focused on professional networking. Currently, LinkedIn boasts that they have over 900 million users worldwide. LinkedIn has differentiated itself from other social media by focusing on the professional and business aspects of a person’s life instead of personal and social aspects like Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, and Instagram. As a job seeker, if you haven’t considered LinkedIn as a key part of your job search puzzle, then you are missing out. For both seasoned and novice LinkedIn users, here are a few LinkedIn job search tips to consider.  

An Unlimited Supply of Network Connections

A “LinkedIn Job Search Tips” listing would not be complete if we didn’t speak to how critical networking is…regardless of whether you are actively searching for a job. The LinkedIn platform is specifically designed to foster effective networking. While you should use LinkedIn like a Rolodex for current colleagues, you should also consider establishing a strategy for building your number of connections by reaching out to others who share similar experiences with you. 

You should also max out your group memberships by submitting a request to join groups you find relevant to your career goals. Sprout Social digs into additional details about the benefits of leveraging LinkedIn groups, but it has been my experience that groups are a great way to surround yourself with like-minded people. Because groups are more specialized, members are able to engage in dialogues around a specific industry, topic, or area of expertise. As of this writing, you can join up to 100 groups…plenty of opportunities to network for a future job prospect.

As a side note, you should be aware that between 70 and 80% of jobs are filled without actually being posted or advertised. Which proves that actively growing and nurturing your LinkedIn network through personal connections and group membership is a proven job search tactic. 

An Unlimited Supply of Job Opportunities

Perhaps the greatest advantage of LinkedIn is the incredible job board the platform offers. LinkedIn’s user-friendly interface makes it easy to search for specific jobs based on the filter and keyword options. And LinkedIn’s job board platform facilitates easy communication with the hiring company or recruiter once you have applied.  

Oh, and my favorite feature is that you can set job alerts. Even the passive job seeker may be interested in this option because you can receive job alerts based on all of your ‘dream job’ parameters. Just set the alert up and receive emails when your dream job becomes available. 

One more tool in your ‘LinkedIn Job Search Tips’ toolbox: research specific companies that you want to align with or work for and network with key leadership members. Participating in their posts will foster recognition and relationships that can benefit you in a future job application.   

A Step-by-Step Guide for Jobseekers

Use the tool to build your Brand.

If all of your focus is on your resume, you are making a huge mistake. 

We often state how we, as hiring managers, want to understand more than just your qualifications. We want to hear what is important to you, what types of work environments you excel in, and where your passions lie. All of these personal characteristics help to craft your story. And your story is directly related to your personal brand. 

And all professionals should build a professional brand that goes well beyond a resume and cover letter.

We recently published a podcast on the art of brand storytelling which provides some guidance on how to broadcast your narrative (and why it is important to do so). Because your LinkedIn profile doesn’t have to be as formal as your resume, it can be used to complement your CV by highlighting your personality and outlining your goals. So while your LinkedIn Profile should never conflict with your resume, it is a waste to just post a copy of your CV on it. 

The ‘LinkedIn job search tips’ net is this: every recruiter and hiring manager I work with will look at your LinkedIn profile when considering your candidacy. Therefore, why wouldn’t you consider LinkedIn a tremendous platform to host your career story?

Always upload a professional profile picture. 

According to a previous LinkedIn article, members with a photo received 21 times more profile views and 9 times more connection requests. And no, this doesn’t mean you need to hire a professional photographer, although having an appropriate picture is important. The key is to dress like you already have the job, ensure your head and shoulders are clearly visible, and make sure your background is simple and well-lit. 

Your LinkedIn banner should be customized too. And this doesn’t have to be complicated or costly and certainly shouldn’t compete with your profile picture. You can select a free banner from Canva and personalize it…just make sure any quotes or words that you add to the banner aren’t covered up by your profile picture. 

Use your real name and location.

Don’t abbreviate. 

I consistently receive LinkedIn invitations from individuals using the “Open to Work” banner…but they are only using their first name or initials on their profile. LinkedIn is a professional networking site – where the term ‘networking’ is key to the point I want to make in this section. When someone reaches out to me on LinkedIn, I assume that person’s goal is to enter into a relationship with me so that I can either coach or represent them. 

Would you have requested to connect with me if you hadn’t seen my full name? 

It isn’t likely. So why would you expect me to enter into a relationship with you if you aren’t revealing your full name? I certainly wouldn’t expect a company to consider your candidacy when you haven’t shared basic information with them. Would you? 

I have also noticed more LinkedIn job seekers are being vague about their location. I can assume that is because the jobseeker is either open to relocating or they are only interested in remote positions. But my suspicious side wonders if the individual is hiding something. 

Every company has a location requirement. Even companies that are hiring remote team members will have some type of country or time zone requirement. At a minimum you should represent your location as the closest city or metro area to you. 

Be careful with nicknames. 

Last week I received an application where the candidate included her LinkedIn profile link as part of her contact information. I love it when candidates do this because it saves me from searching for a profile. But here is the concern – the name used on the resume wasn’t the same name used on her LinkedIn profile. And the discrepancy wasn’t as simple as a different last name. I also couldn’t bridge to the use of a nickname because both her first and last names were different. 

Why would she do that? 

Let me go back to this: LinkedIn is a professional networking site…where the term ‘professional’ is key to the point I want to make in this section. Do not correspond with a recruiter or potential hiring manager using a nickname that you have not referenced across your entire brand. Meaning that your nickname it is included your resume, cover letter and LinkedIn profile. 

Don’t undervalue the LinkedIn Summary. 

Note that the LinkedIn Summary shouldn’t be treated like the objective on a resume. I have blogged about this at least a dozen times this year – an objective can be the death of your candidacy. Instead of stating what you are looking for, use the summary to emphasize your strengths. 

Make sure you insert your personality into the writeup. Recruiters and future hiring managers will almost always check out your LinkedIn Summary to make sure they can gain a strong understanding of who you really are and what skills you will be able to provide.  

Complete the experience section. 

I mean really complete it. Job opportunities aren’t going to find you if you have little or nothing listed on your LinkedIn profile. 

Still Not Convinced You Need LinkedIn? 

You may be thinking “I’ve been in the industry for 20 years and I’ve got an incredible resume to prove my value, I don’t need an online profile to land a job.” 

Yes, you do. 

Kinsta reports in a recent study that 95% of recruiters regularly use LinkedIn. They then go to state 122 million people received an interview through LinkedIn. Oh, and 35.5 million of those individuals where hired by someone they connected with. LinkedIn states that on average, eight people are employed per minute on LinkedIn. 

We highly recommend you get on board with the LinkedIn movement. It will make you a much more competitive job seeker! And if you have any questions, reach out to us and we will help where we can.