A Jobseeker’s New Year’s Resolutions – Part 4
Sam Wilson, January 16, 2014
4. Set up a LinkedIn profile.
LinkedIn was founded in 2002 (2 years before Facebook) but remained fairly quiet in its early years. As of 2006 it had grown to 20 million users however it has taken until the last few years for it to really take off. LinkedIn now boasts 259 million users worldwide and is available in 20 languages.
LinkedIn takes it place as the main ‘professional’ social media platform and is being used increasingly in the world of recruitment in both advertising vacancies and for employers to do some research on the prospective employees. This significantly increases the importance of not only having a LinkedIn profile but building a full profile that includes your professional experience and skills.
A complete LinkedIn profile can act in a similar way to a CV but also as a source of references as previous employers and colleagues have the opportunity to ‘endorse’ your skills. Employers are using LinkedIn to screen candidates so it can not just help to have your profile but actually harm your prospects if you don’t.
Important things to remember:
- Be careful with any embellishments - You might get away with it on a CV but on LinkedIn but your previous employers can see your LinkedIn profile. Don’t make any false claims.
- Use an appropriate photo – A photo of you out with your friends won’t work with the professional nature of this platform. Use a headshot if you have one, if not then go for something simple and professional.
- Follow the guidelines – LinkedIn will walk you through setting up your profile and let you know what’s missing. Take some time and fill in all the sections.
- Connect! – ‘Connections’ are the LinkedIn equivalent of ‘Friends’ and they’re good to have. Having connections gives people an opportunity to endorse your skills and also keeps people updated of your current position, skills and ambitions. You never know when someone might hear about an opening and think of you because they’ve seen your skills and experience on LinkedIn.
Certain employers now say that they are deterred by candidates that don’t have LinkedIn profiles and for some industries it is an absolute must. It is likely that LinkedIn will become increasingly important in the world of recruitment so stay up-to-date, increase your future prospects and get involved now!
The 5th and final instalment of our Jobseeker's New Year's Resolutions will be released on Monday (20th January)