Five steps to an all-star profile on LinkedIn

Five steps to an all-star profile on LinkedIn
Do you want a more “recruiter-friendly” LinkedIn profile? Do you wonder what recruiters are looking for or even if they use LinkedIn for recruitment or active sourcing at all? We asked our recruiters all these questions. They gave us five steps (and some other inside tips) to follow to have an all-star profile on LinkedIn.

1. Optimise your profile photo, headline and URL
It all starts with your profile picture: use a professional photo – that doesn’t mean you need to be in a full business look, but LinkedIn is not the place to upload that photo from your last holiday trip. Make sure your picture has good quality. The minimal size of at least 200 x 200 pixels prevents a blur. Of course, depending on your industry you can also take a creative – yet still professional – approach to your picture.

Your headline will appear right below your name, making it highly visible and – most importantly – searchable! You can use your job title or get creative and come up with something unique that attracts attention. In case you’re actively looking for a job, include this on your headline. That’s what a recruiter will read right after your name!

The URL you’ll be given is a number ID, and you want it to reflect yourself! Customise it by clicking on “Me”, on the top right-hand side of the page, then on “Settings & Privacy”, “Visibility” and finally on “Edit your public profile”. You’ll be taken back to see your LinkedIn profile, and on the right-hand side you have “Edit your custom URL”. The URL is SEO-friendly and is your opportunity to have your profile ranking higher in Google. If you can, use your first and last name.

Recruiter’s tip: if you want to upload a header picture, use images of architecture, landscapes or even something related to a hobby of yours. A header picture isn’t mandatory or of great relevance for recruiters. But if you decide on having one, make sure you have the right size: search on Google for pictures with the right format for LinkedIn headers.

2. Write a good summary
This is probably the most difficult part. Write something short and catchy, not longer than 100 words. Tell people about your skills, experience, academic background – but keep it condensed. Add a personal touch or some fun facts about you. Don’t forget to use the right keywords, think about how you’d like to be found!

Recruiter’s tip: don’t write about yourself in the third person! Remember that you are presenting yourself – so do write as yourself. If you are actively looking for a job, and you are not employed, mention it in your summary!

3. Add media and references to the appropriate positions
If you have blog posts or journal entries as well as references from previous and/or current activities, attach them to your profile.

Are you handling the camera or editing like a pro? Try to create a video explaining what you did in a specific project, volunteer experience or any other thing you find relevant.

Recruiter’s tip: if you just graduated and don’t have a lot of work experience to show, don’t worry! Attach some interesting paper you wrote or a group project that you were part of.

4. Ask for endorsements and/or recommendations
This is a keyword heaven for your profile, as is giving an immediate overview of your most important skills to the recruiters. Remember to keep them updated and focused on the areas you want to be known for.

If you want to add skills, go to your profile scroll to the “Skills & Endorsements” section and click on “Add a new skill”. After you type the name of a skill in the text box, click “Add”. You can pin up to three skills to the profile, so choose them wisely.

In addition to endorsements for skills, you can also request recommendations. Ask people who you’ve worked with previously, a professor or the leader of a team you volunteered with. Avoid asking your university colleagues for recommendations.

To request recommendations, scroll to the “Recommendations” section, click in the area above “Ask for a recommendation” and type in the name of the person. Attention: you need to be connected with that person already!

5. Use stories
Recently, LinkedIn launched the stories function on their channel. You’re probably already familiar with their concept from Snapchat, Instagram or Facebook, but remember: this is a professional network and people don’t expect to see your lunch choice of the day. Try a new approach: having virtual morning coffee with your team? Upload it to the stories, tag your team members! Be creative and insightful, use this channel to build meaningful relationships with your network.

Bonus tips
Follow companies and leaders you like, interesting hashtags and connect with people you know. Create and share content. Targeted networking brings a better newsfeed and you might get cool insights from your industry just by scrolling your feed.

Use LinkedIn to grow your network, connect with people you know or wish to get in contact with. When sending an invite to them, always remember to add a short introductory sentence. Either because you met at that one career fair, you attended a webcast together or just because you applied for a job in their company. Some people are accepting new contacts very restrictedly, and this sentence can make all the difference.

Good to know
If you’re open for a new opportunity, you want recruiters to know it, right? On your profile, right below your name, header and location, you’ll find a box where you can choose what you want recruiters to see: open to work or no longer looking, the location you’re looking for a job, job titles, types, a preferred start date etc.

You can also choose who sees you’re open for a job ­ only recruiters or everyone! When choosing the latter, you’ll get that green #opentowork circle around your picture.

Most importantly: create an attractive and detailed profile with all your work experience, education background, skills and languages. It should reflect the reason for your presence on LinkedIn: to find a job, to grow your network, to get visibility.

Do you want more insights and hear about frequently asked questions? Then watch the video recording of our PwC’s career webcast series: LinkedIn, a key tool for your career. - gemeinsam studieren ist besser
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