Despite the fact that LinkedIn is playing a greater and greater role in the hiring process, many professionals are not making the most out of the professional networking site.
I help a lot of clients develop high-impact LinkedIn profiles; profiles that seamlessly align with their resume, shape and strengthen their brand, and serve as a critical component of their broader career management strategy. Often times clients’ LinkedIn profiles are abandoned virtual spaces that, if considered during the recruiting and / or hiring process, could work against them. While a truly effective LinkedIn profile requires real strategy, there are some very quick things you can do to increase your profile's effectiveness.
Improve your tagline – The tagline on your profile is auto-completed to mirror your current or most recent title. All too often, though, titles don’t accurately represent the position. Don’t waste this valuable space! Change your tagline to represent your actual professional area of expertise. For example, if your title is “HR Generalist,” don’t be afraid to include something more descriptive like “Multifaceted HR Professional and Benefits Administration Expert.”
Optimize the order of your information – I am always surprised when I pull up a professional LinkedIn profile and scroll down to find that the top of the profile – the most prominent spot – is dedicated to something like Courses or Volunteer Experience. Those are important areas, but they certainly are not more relevant than your Professional Experience, Certifications, and Education. You can easily reorder the profile flow, so make sure the most relevant information is at the top.
Secure your vanity URL – LinkedIn provides a simple way to update the inelegant standard profile URL to something much prettier and easy to remember. All you have to do is visit your profile settings and select the option to change your profile URL. I recommend that clients select some variation of their name (which can get tricky for common names) and avoid hyperbolic titles like: linkedin.com/in/ExtremeBenefitsAdminRockstar.