If you’re like most people, you’re on LinkedIn. It’s the social media network that you’re a part of, but mostly ignore, until the very moment you need it. But you shouldn’t ignore it for only when you’re looking for a job. Keeping your profile up to date and adding connections in real time will serve you well when you do decide to flip that job search switch on. Not only that, but it will also enable recruiters to find you even when you’re not actively looking. As we know, recruiters are constantly looking on LinkedIn for new candidates. Using these 5 ways to update your Linkedin profile, give yours an update today!
1. Give your profile picture a check-up
Ask yourself if your picture is current enough, feels professional and is making a positive impression on anyone stopping by your profile. The best profile photos are ones of you alone, in a somewhat professional outfit (though does not have to be a suit), and looking happy and friendly. Avoid photos with someone else’s arm cropped out or ones taken during a night out.
2. Add recent connections
It’s always better to add connections throughout the year versus right when you need something. Connections are helpful for a few reasons. First of all, it’s very hard to keep track of your broader professional network, especially given how quickly people move around these days. Perhaps someone you met last year now is working at your dream company. Ultimately, keeping track of your professional network is not only easiest on LinkedIn, but also expected. No one will think it’s weird that you connect with them on the site, versus Facebook or Instagram which tends to be more personal.
3. Make sure you have brief summaries under each job listed
While you absolutely do not need to repeat your whole resume on LinkedIn, having a summary under each role is very helpful. Recruiters will often search for keywords that relate to the job and not all job titles will contain those keywords. I often use the example of one of my own past titles which was “Talent Acquisition Associate”. Since that type of role is more often referred to as “Recruiter” the summary was an opportunity for me to clarify that the responsibilities were the same. Adding these short summaries will enable recruiters to more fully understand your skill set and present you with the right opportunities. If you’re not interested in a job opportunity shared with you, feel free to ignore the message and no harm done!
4. Make sure your headline is current and compelling
The LinkedIn headline is often ignored but it’s actually the first thing people see when they land on your profile other than your name and photo. If you’re a student you might want to write something like “Senior at NYU Seeking Marketing Opportunities” or if you’re unemployed and looking for a new role you can go with something along the lines of “Marketing Professional Seeking New Opportunities”. People have different opinions on what makes a good LinkedIn headline, but I think it should be pretty literal so anyone who lands on your profile can quickly get a sense of your status.
5. Browse your network and reconnect with people
Take a few moments every few months to look through your feed, browse through your network, and send people quick messages saying hello, congrats on the new job, or anything else. I’ve always felt that to be an effective networker, you need to keep relationships strong before you’re asking for a favour. If someone is doing something you’re truly interesting take it a step further and suggest a quick catch up or coffee.
Doing these 5 easy things now and then repeating every few months will take LinkedIn from being an afterthought to being a tool that will help you when you need it to.
Image via The Work at Home Woman