There is no fail-safe method for landing the job of your dreams, but many professionals scroll through LinkedIn for new job and networking opportunities.
With the Coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis forcing us to work from home and adapt to social distancing, there has never been a better time to update and improve your LinkedIn profile.
A staggering 630 million people across 150 countries are now using the world’s largest professional networking site, since it was founded 16 years ago, and as a recruiter, a lot of my work is LinkedIn-based.
I work across a wide range of candidates and gather business intelligence for a multitude of clients. However, I sometimes find that while potential candidates showcase a strong skillset and considerable talent, certain elements might let them down.
Here is how to use LinkedIn to your maximum advantage.
Your profile photo
Most potential recruiters/employers will see your photo before they’ve even clicked on your profile, especially if you share or post comments.
It’s vital to give the right impression at first glance and potential employers can be turned off if your profile shot features you wearing sunglasses and cradling a glass of wine. While we are all human, this is not a dating website and your LinkedIn profile shouldn’t reflect what you’re like on a night out.
The best LinkedIn photo is taken by someone else - ensure you are close up and central to the frame, with a solid background.
Wearing business casual clothing is the best bet for looking approachable yet professional.
Accept invitations immediately
The most important thing you can do on LinkedIn is keep your profile up-to-date and be as active as possible. This is no time to play the hard-to-get card, so accept an invitation as soon as you can as it could be a job opportunity.
From a recruiter’s point of view, I appreciate and respect a potential candidate for responding promptly, even if they aren't interested.
Before making contact, recruiters need to know that individuals are on the market so it’s helpful if you click on the LinkedIn profile setting that shows you are actively seeking a job, to enable us to approach you about opportunities.
Join LinkedIn groups
Take the time to explore and join industry-based groups to expand your network and share thoughts and interests with fellow professionals. It makes it easy for us recruiters to have a quick look within that group and contact potential candidates.
According to research, just two percent of LinkedIn users have not joined any group and it is key for candidates who want to network further.
Also, follow your dream company’s LinkedIn profile, and feel free to connect with someone within the firm. Ensure you personalise your connection request, as this is a great opportunity for you to expand your network and to stay abreast of any challenges and inside scoops.
Write original content
If candidates want to do more than just repost people’s articles and posts, I recommend they write original content to post on LinkedIn. This will keep your network active with your profile and enable people to understand the topics that matter most to you.
This could be an entirely original piece but even just writing an introductory short blurb about something you are reposting will help boost your profile, demonstrate your knowledge and keep you relevant.
Connect with recruiters
This will enable you to be exposed to their network, along with any available job opportunities.
Recruiters often post about opportunities, events and business intelligence findings, making it a ripe opportunity to get a better understanding of the market.
As a candidate, you can use these resources as you progress with your job search.
Marcel Howard is Acre’s Head of Research within the US team and is based in Acre’s New York City office.
+1 (917) 546 7251