The internet is undoubtedly the best thing that happened to the modern man after the industrial revolution.
Giving us the ability to be anywhere at any time, connecting us to people thousands of miles away and serving as a fertile ground for opportunities of all kinds mostly through social media platforms.
Out of the many benefits of the internet, particularly social media. There’s LinkedIn which stands out as a global professional job platform for job seekers, employers, and freelancers.
For today’s article, we’ll explain what LinkedIn is used for and how you can leverage it to get your ideal job.
What Is LinkedIn?
LinkedIn is a powerful tool that functions as an extensive network for professionals across the globe. LinkedIn provides you with the opportunity to develop skills, build networks, form connections with appropriate recruiters, seek credible advice and guidance from experts and ultimately succeed in your career path.
LinkedIn is home to about 822 million registered users from different professional backgrounds such as students, small business owners, companies and job seekers.
Through LinkedIn, you can learn the skills you need to advance in your career, find the right internship or job and strengthen professional relationships. You can also write articles, organize offline events, post photos and videos and join groups.
Despite the truckload of benefits that LinkedIn has to offer, it can only be as useful as you want it to be. This is why you must learn how to leverage the amazing features of the app to get the best out of it. There are different ways you achieve this. Keep reading to find out how!
How To Leverage LinkedIn For Job Search
Recent statistics show that about 57 million organisations use LinkedIn to publish news about their business and over 95% of them use the app for recruitment purposes. Currently, as of April 2022, there are about 15 million open jobs listed on LinkedIn. Here’s how you can leverage LinkedIn to help you land that dream job.
1. Update Your Profile Regularly
According to LinkedIn, members who have profile pictures are 14 times more likely to have their page viewed than those who don’t. And those who post their skills are 13 times more likely to receive profile views compared to those who don’t. If you want recruiters to notice you then you need to constantly update your profile.
First, start by putting up a clear and recent profile picture. Your face should make up about 60% of the picture and don’t forget to smile. List all your skills, especially the current ones and highlight recent work experience on your profile. There are about 45,000 skills on LinkedIn for you to choose from and you can add up to 25 skills to your profile.
Lastly, make sure your profile summary is concise and captivating. Don’t just list out your skills and objectives, create a story out of it. Give practical examples of how and when you used certain skills to solve work-related problems and achieve success. It will make your profile summary 10 times more appealing than the average.
2. Update Your Headline
Your headline describes you and it is the first thing people see alongside your name and picture when they search. Your headline should highlight what you do and the type of position you’re looking for. You can also share your main objective there, to make it stand out. For example, your headline could be: “Digital marketing specialist connecting buyers to company products”. Always keep it short, clear and precise.
3. Let People Know You’re Available
Don’t just set up your profile and leave it there. Recruiters are more likely to message you when they see that you’re open to new jobs. One way to let them know you’re available is to announce it. Make a post, stating your qualifications and possible positions or companies you’d like to work with. Another way is to make use of your headline to announce your availability.
For example, your headline could be “Social media manager looking to help companies build brand awareness and credibility”. With this, you’re hitting two targets at once, letting them know your speciality and that you’re also available for new jobs.
4. Build Your Network
Your connections on LinkedIn greatly increase your exposure. Be intentional about building a solid network of people in the same field or industry as you. If you’re new to the app, you can start connecting with people you already know by importing your contact list from your Gmail or phone. You can also search for your university and connect with alumni who attended the same school as you.
Once you’re ready to start reaching out to companies, go ahead and ask for an introduction from one of your connections. They can introduce you to someone they’re connected with within an organisation. This increases your chance of getting an interview with your potential employers.
5. Ask For Recommendations And Endorsements
One way to build credibility on LinkedIn even if you’re a newbie is to ask for recommendations and endorsements. They are like positive reviews and feedback from others about you, which shows potential employers that you have proof to back up the skills, qualifications and achievements listed on your profile. You can request recommendations from people you’ve worked with previously, asking them to write personal testimonials of their experience working with you.
To get endorsed on LinkedIn, you can start with your network. Go through the list of your connections and identify those who you feel deserve an endorsement. Endorsing others creates a ripple effect, meaning those you’ve endorsed will want to return the favour too. Better still, you can politely reach out to them and ask for an endorsement on a few key skills.
While you’re gathering recommendations and endorsements, remember to select and reach out to only those you value and make sure they’re relevant to your job search. You can decide to display only the relevant ones and hide the rest from your profile.
6. Verify Your Skills On LinkedIn
Studies show that job seekers with verified skills on LinkedIn are 30 times more like to get hired. To verify your skills, you need to take an online assessment test and pass to be awarded the “Verified Skills” badge. The good part is you can retake these tests multiple times before showing that you’ve passed.
There’s also another option of adding your Course Certificate to your profile once you complete a course on LinkedIn Learning. Displaying these certificates and verified skills badges adds more credibility to your abilities and strengthen your personal brand.
7. Find, Follow And Research The Companies You’re Interested In
Because many companies are using LinkedIn for business, your job hunting process is made easier. Simply make a list of all the companies you’d like to work with and find and follow them on LinkedIn. That way, you’ll always have current news about the company and when new positions or vacancies become available. You can be among the first set of people to apply, and possibly get hired.
8. Use The Advanced Search
Do your research on your dream company using the LinkedIn advanced search feature. Find out which of your connections is associated with the company and reach out to them. Depending on their connection with the company, if they’re a client you can ask them what it’s like doing business with them. If they work there, you can ask questions about the company culture. As you gather this information, it helps you learn more about the best way to approach the company for a job.
9. Be Active
Make a conscious effort to be active on LinkedIn. Post and share videos, updates or any article you write. Be current and authentic. You can also join professional groups and interact with others on LinkedIn. You’ll get noticed and receive more recognition when you post and interact with others on the app.
You can use the Advanced Search option to identify professional groups in your field, join the conversation, ask questions and keep engaging as often as you can. This will help you expand your network and possibly connect you to organizations you may end up working with in the future. However, before you join a group, make sure that there’s a recent activity in such a group so you don’t end up wasting your time there.
10. Research Your Future Boss And Executive Team
Before you go for an interview, you can use LinkedIn to research the interviewers and hiring managers. Find out their likes and interests and leverage this information during your interview to create a common ground for relatability. It also tells the hiring team that you’ve done your homework, giving them a good first impression of you.
11. Network After Business Hours
Several studies have shown that the best time to post on LinkedIn is on Tuesdays and Wednesdays between 9 am to 10 am. But since LinkedIn isn’t like other social media platforms, more people tend to go on the app after business hours. So if you want more exposure, you should try updating your status, network and connect with people and organisations after business hours. Although there’s the issue of different time zones, this is why you’ll need to find out who your target audience is and where they reside and adjust your posts accordingly. You can also try posting at different times during the day to see what works best in getting interactions.
LinkedIn, unlike other social media platforms, was specifically designed to serve as an interactive networking site for professionals across industries to establish and strengthen business relationships. This makes it the best place for job seekers, recruiters, entrepreneurs and businesses, freelancers and even students.
You can leverage LinkedIn features, like the Advance Search option, to help you carry out detailed research on companies and individuals you like to work with, the Verified Skills badge, recommendations and endorsements options to help you build credibility and stand a better chance of attracting the right persons and jobs.
One last tip: how well you leverage LinkedIn to get the best out of it, depends on how active you are on the app. Be consistent about posting relevant updates, engaging with others and growing your network.
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