When’s the last time you updated your LinkedIn profile?
Was it the last time you were applying for a new job? Maybe you set up a profile back in college but haven’t refreshed it in years?
Keeping your profile up-to-date and sharing posts with updates about your work can pay dividends in the long run. Being consistent and proactive on LinkedIn is always a good idea, not just when you are actively job searching. Who knows when that next great opportunity will come knocking!
2023 research from career research platform Zippia shows that updating and optimizing your LinkedIn profile can put you in a position for success for two reasons:
- 90% of recruiters use LinkedIn to source candidates for open roles.
- 79% of job seekers are using social media to connect with job opportunities.
Getting strategic about how you use LinkedIn on the job search can pay dividends. It’s a chance to showcase more of who you are outside of what your resume has to say.
And we’re going to connect you with some outside-the-box tips from our internal experts and friends of ours, so you can REALLY stand out.
Call Out Your Top Skills
Remember those 90% of recruiters who might be looking for people like you? They want to know the skills that you have built throughout your career, so they can assess if you might be a good fit for jobs they are recruiting for.
Where can you highlight the skills that you pride yourself on when it comes to your LinkedIn profile? The Headline section is most commonly used to reiterate an individual’s current job title and company. Forward-thinking professionals customize this to include their top skills, the value they can add to a business, or even more specifics on the type of expertise they share on platforms like LinkedIn.
Kim Welborn, Talent Acquisition Manager at ACV Auctions, recommends listing your specialties and key skills as high up on your profile page as you can! Whether in your Headline or in the About area for your personal bio, make sure it’s easy for someone viewing your profile to know what you do and what technical and people skills you use in that work.
Making Sure Your “About” Section is About You
Both Heather Tooley, Talent Acquisition Partner at ACV Auction, and Dora Jones, Talent Acquisition Specialist at Univera Healthcare, highlighted the About section of your LinkedIn profile as an area to craft your perfect elevator pitch.
Why should someone work with you? Why should a business hire you? What makes you unique? What are you passionate about?
On LinkedIn, the About section is a place to answer any of those questions you like in your own authentic voice.
A summary section on a resume might only have two or three lines allotted in a 1-2 page document. The About section of your LinkedIn profile can be longer than that, but you should strive to find a balance between showcasing your personality, and being concise enough that visitors get the message you want to share with them.
Customize Your Profile Listing
Your About section is now designed to catch the attention of a recruiter or hiring manager. The next step they’ll take is to dig into your experience and assess your fit for an open role.
Recruiters and hiring managers who are viewing your profile want to understand your fit for their job opportunity. To do that, they need to paint the best picture they can of your past experiences.
LinkedIn allows you include supplemental information such as whether a role you previously worked in was remote/hybrid/onsite and whether it was a full-time or contracted position. You can even attach media like articles or presentations related to your role!
All this information boosts your keyword count and increases your likelihood of getting noticed by recruiters and hiring managers. This extra information helps to support your credibility as an expert in your work.
Showcase Your Projects
On your resume, you’ll cover the duties and responsibilities from each job you’ve held. Prospective employers are going to want to know more about the work you completed and ask more in-depth questions when considering if you’re the right fit for a certain role.
You’ve shown them the core details already – what stories can you tell about the work you’ve done?
Claire Stroh, our Manager of Talent Managed Services at Lighthouse, is an advocate for tactically communicating your work experience by telling stories about projects you’ve worked on in the past.
Being able to highlight projects you’ve worked on works great for entry-level job seekers who may want to utilize the knowledge they learned through particular college projects and courses. It’s a chance to show employers that you actively engaged with your studies to learn skills you can apply in the professional world. Many of these are group projects too, and employers will want to know how you collaborate and drive work forward in a team setting.
Showcasing projects in this way helps you show how your skills translate from one industry to another. If you’re a technology professional with experience in a highly-regulated field like finance and wanted to apply to work with a company that engages in government-contracted work, your experience upholding certain standards of security are worth highlighting in your application and on platforms like LinkedIn.
Impact Statements and Differentiation
Lighthouse Technology Talent Manager Brianna Hodge takes Stroh’s project-based focus one step further. Having the right skills listed will create curiosity with hiring managers. Using impact statements to communicate the value of your work will catch their attention.
Think of impact statements in three parts:
- What you did
- How you did it
- Why it matters
The impact statement format covers your job or project responsibilities, the specific skills you utilized, and lastly – but most importantly – the impact you drove.
Turning your work experiences into impact statements is the difference between “Filed paperwork for team members” and “Organized office files for over 150 clients, resulting in a new standardized process”.
Want more tips from Brianna? Watch her recent episode of our Live With Lighthouse podcast for more expert advice on how to stand out on the job search, especially in a competitive industry like technology.
Show Up and Stand Out to Hiring Teams
Today, the majority of job seekers use social media to position themselves for success in the job search.
By utilizing some of the tips we’ve shared here, you can give a positive impression to hiring managers after you’ve applied to a job, and you increase your odds of a recruiter sourcing you for additional roles you may not be aware of.
With new positions and opportunities opening up every day, Lighthouse Technology Services can be your partner for finding your next best opportunity.