LinkedIn is currently the most popular social network for professionals, and not to mention overall. I’ve had a LinkedIn account ever since my senior year of undergrad because it was the “it” thing to do, but I didn’t learn how to effectively use it until more recently.
Often times LinkedIn gets underutilized, but the truth is LinkedIn can be extremely powerful, and be the bridge between an unemployed and employed status, and here’s how:
Professional Photos Only
LinkedIn is free, although there is a plus version, but for a beginner, we are going to focus on the free version. Along with setting up your account, you need to find a profile picture that is professional.
I thought this should go without saying being that the site is a professional site, but you need to make sure that your image is a professional headshot.
Granted, if you can’t afford a professional photo, there is nothing wrong with putting on interview attire, or a nice blazer, and have someone take a photo of you. Then once you score the job, go ahead and get a headshot done.
Convert Your Profile Into a Resume
Job seeking is one of the most common — and beneficial — uses of LinkedIn. LinkedIn enables you to turn your profile into a resume-friendly format in seconds with its Resume Builder Tool? Just choose a resume template, edit it, and export it as a PDF that you can print, email, and share.
Advanced Search Options
LinkedIn has an Advanced Search feature which provides a much richer search experience. For example, say you want to find out if you’re connected to anyone who works at a specific company.
Type the company name in the company field in Advanced Search, then filter the results by “Relationship” to see if you have any first- or second-degree connections to any employees.
Use Open Profile To Send Messages To People You’re Not Connected To
LinkedIn only allows you to send messages to people who you share a first-degree connection with. But did you know some people let you send them messages anyway, even if you’re not connected?
Hand Pick The Right Skills
Be specific about the skills you have that make you good at your job. Your connections can now endorse these skills (proving to a reader that you are trustworthy) and previous employers can also reference them in recommendations that they give on your profile.
Searching for a job is a job in itself, and it will take time. But if you are putting in your best effort and use some of these tips, then you’ll be sure to land a job sooner than you think!