With more than 7 million jobs listed at any given time, LinkedIn is an important place to showcase your skills to potential employers—and find work. Employers are increasingly recruiting candidates using social media, so it’s critical to have a professional LinkedIn profile. Like your resume, your LinkedIn profile is often the first impression an employer gets of you, but it may not be maximizing its potential. The following seven tips will help you create a LinkedIn profile that will increase your chances of success.
- Add a professional photo. As the saying goes, a picture says 1,000 words, and having a professional LinkedIn photo goes a long way to showing potential employers who you are and why they should meet you. In fact, profiles with photos receive 14 times more views than those without photos. Have a professional headshot taken that creates the right impression.
- Write an attention-grabbing headline. Your LinkedIn headline should be more than just your job title. You need to explain what it is you do and your specialty. Demonstrate the value you bring by showing your passion. You may also consider adding keywords to make your profile searchable.
- Draft a compelling summary. Your LinkedIn summary is a statement where you describe who you are and what you’ve accomplished. Focus on your career accomplishments and aspirations. Your summary should be 40 word or longer, and include keywords.
- Detail your past work experience. Like your resume, your LinkedIn profile needs to include your past work experience. Profiles with work experience listed receive 12 times more profile views than those without.
- Add examples of your work. Showcase your skills by adding photos, presentations and videos you’ve done. If you’re in a creative profession, provide samples of your work. This gives a dynamic, visually appealing representation of your professional story.
- Add skills and get endorsed for them. Adding skills to your LinkedIn profile adds tags to your profile which helps with search engine optimization. They also show potential employers what you are known for in your industry. Be sure to include a mix of high level and niche skills.
- Include volunteer experiences and causes. Listing your volunteer experience is critical. Profiles that list volunteer experience and causes have six times more profile views than those without. In addition, one in five hiring managers in the U.S. have hired a candidate based on their volunteer experience.
Sheridan’s Faculty of Continuing and Professional Studies (FCAPS) offers a wide range of free professional development workshops. Visit caps.sheridancollege.ca for more information on how Sheridan can help you on the path to a successful career.