Whether you’re looking to secure your first job or looking to move onto a new challenge, a major first step to accomplishing your next occupation is networking.
There are various ways in which candidates can network. Due to the current lockdown restrictions imposed by the UK government, attending events and job fairs are currently not possible. However, one way in which candidates can still network with potential employers and other figures within their chosen industry is via LinkedIn.
We’ve highlighted reasons why LinkedIn could be a beneficial tool for candidates in their search for a new position; such as it being a great way to build their personal profile and join various groups; as well as showcase previous achievements and highlights.
In this article, we’ll look at other ways in which you can use LinkedIn to your advantage.
Making sure your profile is up to scratch is one thing, but attracting visitors to your profile is another. Your background summary is your story, your journey, and why someone should want to find out more about you. Hundreds and thousands of LinkedIn users will write a profile summary, but don’t keep it generic – make it unique! If you’ve had a previous position, speak about your achievements, problems solved, and passions.
Anyone can set up a LinkedIn profile, but if you’re not making full use of it, there’s not much point. Once your profile is set up, that’s your queue to be proactive; go out and network with others, join groups, showcase your work. Recruiters and employers will come across hundreds of candidates a day, and that doesn’t always guarantee your profile is included. Sometimes you have to go out and catch a hiring managers’ attention.
One trick you should adopt if you’re a job-seeker looking for a specific role is to include keywords in your profile headline that recruiters and hiring managers look out for. So if you’re currently a designer and applying for another design position, clearly display in your headline: “Senior Graphic Designer” or “Junior Graphic Designer. This helps your profile turn up in LinkedIn searches for those terms and shows your suitability for the positions you’re seeking.
As well as previous experience, your profile should include your skills. LinkedIn endorsements are a LinkedIn feature that allows your connections to come to your profile and endorse you for certain skills by simply hitting an “endorse” button. These add some validity to your profile by backing up your work experience. Giving out or receiving Recommendations from former employers or employees is also a good trait. It is not always guaranteed that they will always do the favour back, but it will provide additional evidence of your work.
If you’re going for a specific role within a specific business, it’s a good idea to research the company beforehand. Find out who works there and if any of your contacts are connected to the company employees on LinkedIn. If so, ask your contact to introduce you to his or her connection at the company where you want to work.
Upgrading your account will be necessary, should you want to be exposed to additional features that will enhance your LinkedIn experience. There are various paid-plans that LinkedIn offers its users. If you’re a regular LinkedIn user, there is a good chance that you’ve received inMail from LinkedIn in regards to upgrading your plan. If you choose to upgrade to a ‘Premium’ Account, you may have more people reach out to you.
There are countless topic-specific LinkedIn groups. When you join one, you can interact with others outside your professional network, exchanging ideas, tips and even job leads.
A strong LinkedIn presence is essential for any job-seeker. LinkedIn isn’t just useful for finding jobs. Any potential partners, employers, clients, and colleagues will research you on LinkedIn. Your profile will likely be the first impression you make on them – which is why it’s important to continually build and update your profile throughout your career.