For anyone even thinking about getting a new job, Linkedin is arguably the most important resource in your career advancement armoury. Not only does it enable you to search for jobs, connect with influential people and post a digital CV, it allows you to be searchable. This means that recruiters can find you, whether you’ve applied for a role or not.
This ‘searchable’ aspect is what elevates your job search above the competition; get it right and the entire process could be quicker, less arduous and you could end up with an amazing job you’d never have found otherwise. So how can you achieve it?
First things first….a bit about LinkedIn
It’s easy to be lazy with this professional networking platform. Chuck up your CV and leave it at that. You’ll complete the other sections later, right? Wrong. You’re missing a colossal trick – reportedly, 87 per cent of recruiters use LinkedIn to identify and vet candidates. It’s often their first port of call, too. With 467 million members worldwide, you need to put a little effort into getting noticed.
With that in mind, we thought we’d share our top tips on improving your profile visibility. First, we asked Scott Stevens, Account Director, EMEA Search & Staffing at LinkedIn for some advice:
"LinkedIn is not a job board, so your profile doesn’t have to read like your CV,” he told us. "Your profile is the first thing a member sees, so it should be engaging and tell them more about you. It’s really important that your profile serves as a conversation starter."
How to boost your LinkedIn 'searchability’
1) Keep your profile up to date: Apparently, LinkedIn members with an up to date employment history - specifically regarding job titles - are 18 times more likely to be discovered in searches, so update yours once in a while.
2) Ensure your communication settings allow recruiters to make contact: Navigate to ‘communications’ and find the option for receiving InMails from Linkedin partners (i.e. recruiters). This should be set to ‘yes’. Check also that ‘Messages from Members’ includes InMails and not just introductions.
3) Indicate that you’re ‘Open to opportunities’: This is a new feature which allows you to place a digital flag on your profile to identify you as looking for a new job. This is a great tool, as there are ways for recruiters to filter by it to find people who meet their criteria and are actively job hunting.
4) Use a decent, professional picture: A good photo leads to 21 times more profile views and 36 times more messages, according to LinkedIn. Bear in mind that this isn’t Facebook and you’re trying to advance your career, so upload an image with just you in the frame - not on a night out or with your cat.
5) Be inventive with your header: That line under your name doesn’t have to be your job title and the more creative you can be (within reason), the more likely it is that you’ll catch a recruiter’s eye. Instead of saying: ‘Project Manager’ (which you’ll list as your most recent position further down), how about ‘Gets things done through effective project management’?
6) Don’t make your profile a carbon copy of your CV: You need to give recruiters something additional to go on; something that differentiates you from the pack. This is your chance to sell yourself and give more detail around your achievements, so don't merely paste your CV. Add links, get recommendations, expand on achievements - make yourself stand out.
7) Integrate search words/ phrases that recruiters are looking for: A good tip is to view job descriptions for your preferred role and incorporate any relevant, desirable skills. That way, when the recruiter types, for example, ‘Mechanical Engineer + CAD software’, you’ll appear on the search results.
8) Tell your story: Here’s one from Scott: “Use the Experience section to tell your story. Write a couple of concise sentences on your major wins or projects for each position, and how you brought value to your team.”
Other ways to boost your profile
If you’re looking for yet more ways to get your name seen and build credibility within your industry, there are several things you can do on LinkedIn. Joining groups is a great way to stay up to date with latest events and innovations, plus it allows you to participate in discussions and network with key players in the field.
Alternatively, you could become a publisher, writing blog posts and sharing them via the Pulse platform – this enables thousands of people to view your work and positions you as not simply interested in your industry, but as an authority on it. If you’re not much of a writer, don’t worry, you can be a content curator, sharing interesting and relevant blogs. This can be just as effective in getting your profile in front of your network.
Hopefully the above has inspired you to review and optimise it your profile, especially if you’re looking for a job anytime soon. A tonne of advice and guidance can be found on LinkedIn’s blog https://blog.linkedin.com/ and why not follow ARM on LinkedIn? We share loads of great articles, industry updates and fun company news, plus you can connect with our team of recruiters and boost your job prospects even further.