How to get the most out of LinkedIn

Written by Kathryn Hall

The Career Owl

LinkedIn is one of the most untapped resources for people to utilise to raise their profile, whether seeking to build network connections or indeed to find a job.  Whilst a large majority of people create an initial profile it often gets left alone until there is a need to find a job.  This blog will give you some easy and quick wins on how to make your profile work for you even when you are asleep!

Make yourself memorable with great stories

Your LinkedIn Profile needs to be a living, breathing document that clearly represents at all times who you are and what makes you unique. 

  • Share updates on topics related to your field adding your advice and insights on this to reinforce your experience.
  • Make your profile visual by using videos or infographics to enhance your posts and add these to your featured posts.

You could use your stories to advise network connections that you are seeking a new role.

Build Connections

Image by Gordon Johnson from Pixabay

When LinkedIn was initially set up it was designed primarily as a networking tool, effectively a Facebook for business! It is a great way to stay up to date with the latest developments in your field and to share information with others in your field.  There are a few ways of building connections.

Connecting with people you don’t know

When connecting with someone you don’t know on LinkedIn, such as a person who works in a similar role at another company, add relevance by letting them know why you’re messaging them. You might say, “I’ve seen your posts and noticed some of your work. I really appreciate your perspectives and would love to connect.”

LinkedIn has a section called “People also viewed” which gives you suggestions of people in similar fields or industries that you might want to connect with.

Using the search box to find people from past organisations you worked in

Building connections with people you know is particularly useful as you will able to ask them to complete a recommendation and give credibility to your profile.

Choose to follow certain organisations

You could use the search box by clicking on companies and selecting location and stating where you would like to look.

Join LinkedIn Groups

LinkedIn Groups are a great method to find like-minded professionals in your job role or industry.  You can use to share ideas and discuss key topics and show your engagement and expertise within your chosen field.  You also can use these groups to further expand your connections.  You never know if one of these connections holds the key to your next role!

Use LinkedIn to find a job

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

LinkedIn has two main advantages when looking for a job.

First, use your network connections to let them know that you are seeking a new role.  You could do this by writing a post to add on your profile which says something like

Hi everyone – I am seeking a new role as  xxx and would appreciate your support in finding my next opportunity.  I have x years of experience as a xxx plus qualifications in xxx.

What makes me different?

{Insert your key strengths / key skills}

Thank you in advance for any connections, advice or opportunities you can offer.

#opentowork #journeytoajob #jobsearch #jobhunting

Second, find a job via LinkedIn

Many organisations have recognised the power of advertising their roles through LinkedIn Jobs portal.  As a candidate you can use the search box to restrict your search using elements such as job title, location and type of role (such as Hybrid, Remote or Onsite – a recent update to LinkedIn).

One final point …..Remember your online footprint

Think about what other sites you are on and your security profiles for these.  Are there any posts on sites such as Twitter that might affect your employment in the future? Posting something at the age of 16/18 could have repercussions for the rest of your employment life. Think before posting and ensure that your settings are secure and only accessible to your friends and not friends of friends.

Some recruiters now check out candidates as part of the recruitment process to see that they fit with the visions and values of an organisation.

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