While I can’t say LinkedIn gets credit for landing me my last few jobs, it did certainly prepare me to market myself as a brand and stand out in the massive sea of applicants. LinkedIn can be a fantastic tool, whether you are researching careers or using it as an online resume. Here are some quick tips on how to use this sometimes forgotten mode of social media.
1. Share and showcase your work. This has been a great tool as of late that is picking up steam. LinkedIn now uses a feature similar to that of Facebook where you can share an update on your current career, upload photos, video content or publish a document that might be helpful in gaining more eyeballs on your hard work. Just starting out on the job search? Try to dig up old research that might be useful for setting yourself apart as an avid and well-versed candidate. Post videos or documents from internships that will be proof to pudding that you are the best person for the job. This could be something you link to when sending in a resume and cover letter as well. Employers love the ability to see your resume in living and breathing color. This gives you a platform to do exactly that! Currently in your job but want to still showcase your work? Post a project you worked on or link to exciting ventures your company is working on at the moment. This gives your followers or friends and idea of what to expect in the coming months, as well as an opportunity for a humble brag or two!
2. Alumni connections pay off. I am always a proud supporter of connecting with former and current students at my Alma mater and will always lend a hand to anyone who needs my connections. This is a big thing on college campuses across the globe – connect with your alumni and join alumni-related groups! While this sounds drab, it really does pay off. Alums are your ticket to getting ahead of another applicant for the very same job. I tell those on the job hunt – it’s who you know that get you ahead. Sounds a little trite but it is 100% fact that nailing down that one alumni connection could make or break your ability to get your foot in the door. During my own job search, I reached out to former professors to see about setting up informational interviews. These small meetings show determination, your animation and most importantly, your know how of truly using you’re alumni network to its best. While they don’t promise a job, alumni connections can lead to fostering strong relationships with employers around the world. You’ll quickly realize how paying attention in that 8 am class pays off when you are dotting the I’s and crossing T’s for your new job contracts.
3. Keep your page fresh. Let’s face it, we are completely obsessed with keeping our Facebook, Instagram and Twitter pages fresh. But try to take that obsessive mentality and foster it into a job – use LinkedIn as much as you would any other social media page. No, please do not post selfies of your trip to Cancun last year. But keep your page as current as you would any other platform by maintaining good social media hygiene. Keep your resume current and make sure it reflects your current situation. Display your prior job experiences with the most recent toward the top so employers can quickly get to know you. Show off a current headshot (sans smeared make up from last night) and keep your location as well as intentions clear. If you are applying and hunting, try to draft up a quick bio of who you are, what your past experiences have lent and what you want out of the career field of your choosing. If you are already settled, make sure your tense reflects where you are in your work environment. Keeping an eye open while still in the game? It’s totally fine to word your intros as open-ended, showing would- be employers that while you are still employed, if presented with an offer, an honest consideration would be given.
How have you used LinkedIn to find a job? We want to know! Feel free to share in the comments below.
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