LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional network with approximately 467 million current users. Omnicare, 2017. Established in 2002, the free business and employment orientated social network is mostly used for professional networking, including job posting and hunting. On LinkedIn, users can create profiles, connect with past and present colleagues, search for jobs and build a professional network.
In this new digital age it has become increasingly vital that job seekers have current, and active LinkedIn profiles. Having an active LinkedIn account means you can keep a record of your employment history, keep up to date with current job listings or opportunities and network with other industry professionals. A professional qualification such as the Diploma of Social Media Marketing aims to provide those who want to learn how to develop an online personal brand the skills and knowledge to do so. No matter what industry you’re in, a solid understanding of how to promote your professional-self online will get you leaps and bounds ahead. If want to increase your employment possibilities, check out these 6 reasons you need a LinkedIn profile:
Increase Your Chances of Being Hired
Hiring managers and job recruiters use LinkedIn to head hunt candidates. Not only do they source potential talent from LinkedIn, they also use the social network to examine candidates prior to arranging an interview. This has become so popular that social media has become a common universal hiring tool. A study by Jobvite, the Recruiter Nation Survey 2015, found that 92 percent of recruiters surveyed used social media as part of their hiring process, using social media to find candidates, and assess candidate’s previous employment history and professional background. LinkedIn was the most commonly checked social media platform, with 87 percent of recruiters using it as a primary source of information. Next was Facebook with 55 percent and Twitter with 47 percent. Jobvite, 2015.
This research shows that if you apply for a job, there is a very high chance that your employer will search your LinkedIn profile. If you don’t have a LinkedIn account you run the risk of looking unprofessional, and even worse, missing an opportunity to wow your employer. The same study by Jobvite also found that while 92 percent of recruiters use LinkedIn to find candidates, only 36 percent of job seekers are on LinkedIn. Jobvite, 2015. This is a massive advantage that every full-time job seeker should act on.
Build Your Credibility
Having a LinkedIn profile helps build professional credibility. On LinkedIn you can build your professional network, maintain a detailed record of your employment history and display recommendations from previous employers. Similar to a resume, on LinkedIn you build an employment timeline. However, with LinkedIn you can add far more detail than you would on a resume. On LinkedIn you can detail your position, company name, length of employment and up to several paragraphs explaining your roles and responsibilities within that position. In this description you can also discuss the strategies you implemented with success or any changes you made that saw the company benefit.
To add further credibility, you can also display recommendations and references from previous employers on your LinkedIn profile. References are incredibly important or one reason: they validate how valuable you are as an employee, and how hard you worked in your previous role. Finally, LinkedIn has a section for you to list your professional skills. For example, if you were a Social Media Marketer, you would list: Social Media, Digital Marketing, Editing, Blogging, and Graphic Design on your featured skills and endorsements list. This list is public and all of your connections can click ‘endorse’ on the skills they think you do well in. This shows recruiters that other professionals in the industry trust you and back your skills!
It’s the First Thing Recruiters Will See When They Google You
As previously mentioned, hiring managers and recruiters use social media to examine potential candidates during the hiring process. In fact, online job expert Susan P. Joyce told the Huffington Post that 80 percent of employer’s google job seekers before inviting them to an interview. Huffington Post, 2014. This shows that all hiring managers and recruiters will google your name before inviting you to an interview or seriously considering your resume, and guess what most commonly appears first? r57 shell Your LinkedIn profile! Unless you are a world-wide celebrity, with a Wikipedia page your LinkedIn account will appear first. To impress your recruiters, and avoid your less professional social media accounts ranking so highly, create a LinkedIn account to outshine your Facebook, Instagram and Twitter!
Develop your Personal Brand
You can add more to your LinkedIn profile than you can your resume. In addition to building an employment history timeline, showing off your references and having a featured skills and endorsements list, you can also list all of you academic achievements, awards and accomplishments; volunteer work, involvement in charity, personal interests and industry leaders you are influenced by. Another feature LinkedIn encourages users to get involved with is its publishing platform, allowing members to publish articles about their expertise and interests within their professional fields. Being able to express your opinions and share your experiences is a great way to establish a professional identity with your industry.
This all contributes to the development of a strong personal brand; you want your employers to see you as an ambitious individual who makes valuable contributions to their industry. Being on LinkedIn ensures your personal brand will reach a wider target audience and most importantly, show off your professionalism to your future employers. Creating a strong personal brand through LinkedIn is a great way to manage what personal content about yourself is shared online and how far it can be spread.
Keep up with Companies you Aspire to Work For
Being on LinkedIn will help you gather industry insights, and help you learn more about other companies you want work for in the future. On LinkedIn you can choose to ‘follow’ companies you are passionate about. Similar to Facebook, LinkedIn has a newsfeed where you can view all your connections latest posts and shares – including important industry news and updates. Following a company you admire on LinkedIn will help you stay up to date with what they’re doing and how they’re going. Who even knows, they may post a job adverting a position you might be interested in! Not to mention, on LinkedIn you can also connect with other professionals in the same industry, who also follow the same companies.
Want to increase your presence on online? Check out our Diploma of Social Media Marketing course outline here. Or if you prefer to speak to a Course Advisor, call us on 1300 236 364.