When social media was in its infancy there was a tendency to keep our online activity as separate as we could from our jobs and professional lives. But as the online world has changed and grown, so too has our attitude towards social media.
Our online presence now forms an integral part of our professional profile, helping us promote ourselves, make professional connections and find technology jobs. This is most obvious in the popularity of LinkedIn, a social network for professional people.
LinkedIn has become such an important part of the business world that you’re doing yourself a disservice if you don’t have it. Simply being on LinkedIn isn’t enough though, especially if you are on the job hunt.
Employers use LinkedIn to screen potential employees and many now use the site as their primary recruitment tool. So how can you maximise your profile to make yourself as employable as possible?
Heading and sub heading
When improving your LinkedIn profile, start with what employers are going to see first – your name, job title and photo.The key thing to remember with this headline information is to keep it simple and to the point while still allowing employers to find you.
Rather than just listing your job title, put some of your key responsibilities in your sub heading as well. This’ll give employers a more immediate idea of your skills and you’ll hit more keywords too!
When it comes to your photo, try to keep it as professional as possible. You don’t need to go on an expensive photo shoot but make sure you’re dressed smartly and are smiling.
As with a CV or job application form, employers are most interested in the experience section of your LinkedIn profile so spend some time getting it just right. Don’t be afraid to list jobs you’ve had in the past that are no longer relevant. On a CV, omitting early jobs is a good way to save space but you don’t need to worry about that on LinkedIn. Besides, the more jobs you can list the more extensive your profile will be.
Be sure to write a summary of every position you’ve held to show employers your skills, responsibilities and achievements. This will also enable you to include keywords naturally in your profile, helping with your search ranking.
Make yourself visible
LinkedIn is a great way to search and apply for technology jobs but it can also be a very useful tool to help you get noticed by employers or recruiters on the hunt for talent.We’ve already mentioned keywords a few times in this article and it really helps to think about what search terms you want to be found for so you can include the right keywords naturally in your profile. For instance if you are looking for sql developer jobs be sure you include the keyword within your profile – preferably in a prominent position.
These will often crop up of its own accord as your write your profile but by knowing exactly what type of job or sector you are after you’ll be able to hone your profile to make it more effective.
Making connections is also a very good way to get yourself noticed as the LinkedIn search tool ranks results based on relevant connections.When an employer searches for a job title, for example, the highest results will be people who are either connected to that employer or are connected to one of their contacts. Essentially this means the more connections you have the more likely you are to rank highly and get noticed.