This week's post is written by the lovely Kristin Vandegriend of Career Story--my favorite go-to person for all things LinkedIn and resume-writing. Kristin loves working with clients to help them tell their stories and communicate their value through resumes, cover letters, and in social media (particularly LinkedIn).
Did you know that 73% of employers will “Always” or “Often” check you out on social media after receiving your application? This is what I learned after conducting a survey of 60 hiring decision makers including recruiters, HR professionals, and business owners.
Having a solid, professional LinkedIn profile can make you stand out as a strong candidate.
But what makes a good LinkedIn profile? I recently talked to a few recruiters to get their tips and tricks for how you can maximize your LinkedIn presence.
Write in a Friendly, Professional Tone. LinkedIn is moving from being proper and serious (“all business”) to being more friendly and personable. After all, it is a networking platform and networking is all about relationships.
Maz from Aughdem Recruitment recommends that you write your profile and experience in the first-person. Share your motivations, story, and your why! Let your personality come out. People want to hire people they like.
In interacting on LinkedIn, be approachable and helpful. Share information that will be useful to your network. You can share pictures or personal stories if they are relevant to your network. For me, the posts that have had the most engagement have been personal stories and pictures related to my career.
Look to build connection by being friendly. If someone asks you to connect, accept and then send them a welcome message and try to get to know them better. Also, if you are sending connection requests, always customize your request.
Make Your Profile Complete and Neat: There is a balance between too much and too little information on LinkedIn. You need to provide enough detail so that employers understand what you are capable of. Do not leave any sections blank.
Less is more. Each section (Summary and Experience) on LinkedIn has a 2000-character limit. I advise my clients to aim for approximately 1000 characters per section.
Vanessa, Talent Acquisition Specialist for Hemmera, stated that she looks for candidates to have an organized and tidy profile. This can be easily done by using icons as bullets and space between paragraphs.
Use Keywords: To be found on LinkedIn, you need to know what keywords to integrate in your profile. Recruiters or hiring managers use LinkedIn like a search engine, often using keywords like job titles, technology, and location to source candidates.
Look at job postings for your ideal position. Make a list of the keywords and then ensure they are sprinkled throughout your profile. It’s very important that you also have them into your headline.
Your Skills and Endorsements section should be a thorough representation of what you want to be found for. Be sure to review this section to make certain it showcases your best skills and knowledge.
Invest in a Good Profile Picture: The number one piece of advice that came from the recruiters and HR personnel I talked to? Have a good profile picture! LinkedIn is your professional web presence and a representation of your personal brand. You need to show up looking professional and friendly.
Be Mindful of Your Actions: Every time that you take an action on LinkedIn, it is publicly broadcast to your connections. Make sure that anything you publish, comment on or even like, is professional. You can easily damage your reputation and dilute your brand message if you are not careful.
And lastly, here’s a bonus tip from Lucas from TEKsystems. If a recruiter reaches out to you on LinkedIn, why not take a few minutes to chat with them, even if you aren’t looking for your next opportunity? Recruiters have a great sense of what is going on in the industry and if you can build up a relationship with them now, it could help you down the road when you are ready to make a career transition.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.