Too often, the LinkedIn profile is a failing tool that we don't take the time to work on, or to update. It does not reflect the professional reality of its owner, and above all, it does not highlight his skills. However, succeeding in showing one's skills, highlighting one's network, or promoting one's experiences is essential in a digital identity process. Your LinkedIn profile should serve your online presence, not the other way around! Let us not forget that it is possible to be “hunted” on the network. If you are in a proactive job search process, LinkedIn should be part of your strategy. Here are 10 important points to highlight and optimize on your profile.
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A professional photo
The anonymous CV fashion has lived. Whatever you think, recruiters will look at your photo, analyze it, and draw conclusions about your ability to meet the job's assignments. So avoid selfies, photos taken with the webcam, cropped vacation photos, and photos taken in your living room or bedroom! Be professional, dress accordingly, and don't hesitate to hire a professional, or take a quality photo using an SLR against a neutral background. Also remember to smile and show yourself in your best light. Finding a job also means succeeding in “seducing” the recruiter.
Include a banner to highlight your profile
LinkedIn now offers to upload a background on the same template as the Twitter and Facebook covers. The recommended size is 1400 * 425px. The background makes your profile stand out and takes care of the appearance of it.
Make a summary of your profile by way of presentation
The first section that a visitor will read on your profile is the "Summary" part. It must contain a summary of your professional profile, your experiences, and your desires. It must also reflect your situation on the job market: on standby, in post, in active research ... Here again, highlight your qualities, and your latest achievements. Do not take too long, the visitor must want to read the "experience" section.
This section allows the recruiter to make a first impression, to identify who you are and what you do. Only the first three lines of this section are visible at first glance. So it's important to use the right keywords and the right phrases from the start to make the recruiter want to read more. Start by mentioning your current situation, your responsibilities, your skills and areas of specialization if applicable, not forgetting your goals and aspirations. If you are working on specific projects or if you have areas of interest highlighting traits of your personality that can be transposed to the business world, do not hesitate to highlight them. Conclude your summary with a call-to-action such as "contact me in PM".
- Eye-catching, succinct, descriptive.
- Made up of terms that will spark interest in professionals looking for your skills.
- More explicit than your business card.
- Be precise and catchy, a few sentences are enough.
- Say who you are, making others want to know you and your vision / mission as a professional.
- Mention the key points of your profile, your skills and your specialties.
Your professional experiences
- Describe your professional background: your current position, and previous ones.
- Use keywords to detail your experiences
- Illustrate your successes with examples (not confidential information) or concrete achievements.
Your training and your diplomas
- Promote your course: schools, universities, 3rd cycle must appear clearly.
- Mention the diplomas obtained, the distinctions.
Your skills and expertise
- Indicate your expertise with the Skills function.
- Have them validate on your profile by your connections.
- Obtain recommendations by soliciting your work colleagues, managers, collaborators, clients, etc.
- Managers and people looking for new talents, new clients and new business relationships prefer people who are recommended to them.
The summaries are indexed by the search engine of LinkedIn. Remember to insert the keywords relating to your activity and your skills.
Stay honest about your real skills: do not embellish your profile with risky or even deceptive experiences, it may not go unnoticed for a long time!
Consult the profiles of other LinkedIn members: their presentation can help you build your own.
Solicit your customers, partners and suppliers for your recommendations, not just your colleagues or the people you work with on a daily basis.
Under your first and last name, you have a 120-character subtitle to indicate your professional identity. This element must contain relevant keywords to move up in recruiters' search results. If you are in position, indicate your current position and the name of your company (eg: Sales at Ebay). Otherwise, your title should match the job title you are targeting. Depending on your industry or the country of the companies you want to work for, it may be a good idea to write it in English. Finally, keep in mind that the search engine of this large professional social network works like google. Beyond your title, consider putting keywords in all parts of your LinkedIn profile.
Prove your achievements
Whether by including links to articles about you or by uploading a file that highlights your work, there are many possibilities to "prove" your achievements. It's the best way to showcase your work. Do not hesitate to integrate your Slideshare presentations. If you have a blog or a particular presence on the web, again, don't hesitate to put it forward.
Detail your experiences ... and successful projects
The “experience” section is obviously the most important. So take the time to "tag" companies if they are in the LinkedIn database. Remember to detail your missions (without going into uninteresting details) and especially to approach the projects on which you have worked. Detailing your projects and your successes will be your best business card: launching a site, increasing turnover, achieving objectives…
Concentrate on your most meaningful experiences
When you have little experience you are tempted to put everything in. Except that your experiences as a salesperson in a supermarket or as a summer camp instructor are of little interest. The more experiences you have, the more "minor" experiences such as internships will lose interest. The summary of your experiences must remain impactful and highlight your main experiences. And the most successful.
We think of LinkedIn as an online CV, but the service is increasingly used for content curation. Without flooding your network, it is nevertheless interesting to share the results of your monitoring in your area of expertise. This content aspect of the network will also become increasingly important in the future.
Show your expertise on groups in your sector
Not all LinkedIn groups are relevant: a lot of spam, self-promotion, unmoderated posts ... Nevertheless, certain target groups are very interesting in their field (communication, digital, HR, industry, etc.) and are frequented by many recruiters and industry players. Therefore, it is important to make yourself noticed with these actors, by posting, or by taking part in the discussions. Again, show relational intelligence. The goal is to network, not to spam.
Recommend your peers, and they will recommend you
Even though the limits of the exercise are obvious, and the recommendations have relative value, they can nonetheless enhance your experiences and skills. If the skills recommendations are made almost automatically and therefore have little importance, the written recommendations of your N + 1 or former managers affect the quality of your profile.
Remember that LinkedIn is a SOCIAL network
Behave on LinkedIn as you would IRL: engage in discussion, exchange, debate… But in a natural way. Avoid flooding or harassing your contacts because you are looking for a job, it would be counterproductive. Finally, your network is built over time, feed it and enrich it regularly. Don't wait until you want to change jobs! LinkedIn is leaving more and more space for the social dimension, discussion and content. Enjoy it!