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LinkedIn for Job Seekers: Dos and Don’ts

In order to optimize every minute of your job search and leverage every tool at your disposal, you’ll need to lean heavily on your social networks, and that means taking advantage of social media resources like Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. Your LinkedIn account won’t land you a job all by itself, but maintaining a profile can improve your access to managers and recruiters. And since you only need one yes, every little bit helps. Here are a few LinkedIn does and don’ts that can get you off the market faster.

DO complete your profile sooner rather than later

Even if you don’t flesh out your profile in fine detail, you should at least have one. If you haven’t done so already, take a few moments before the end of the day today and create a brief summary and cursory description of your last few relevant positions. You can add, delete, polish and perfect your profile later, but first you’ll need to get your name out there.

DON’T skip these three words

No matter what you decide to include in your profile (and remember, the site is public), you should provide readers with these three details: Your industry, your preferred job title, and a general geographic area. You don’t have to tell readers exactly where you live, but give a broad location like “Seattle area” or “Southern New Jersey”. Recruiters often use these three items in keyword searches as they sift through profiles looking for a match.

DO use keywords that align with what you want

If you’re looking for a “start-up company” or you’re ready for a “mid-level management position” or you’d like to make use of your “ten years of clinical experience”, make sure you include these types of phrases in your profile. Think like a hiring manger and imagine the types of search terms you would use if you needed to find resume matches for your ideal position.

DO explore the open positions sent to you by the site

LinkedIn uses fairly detailed algorithms to find posts and open opportunities that seem to align with what you’re looking for. Don’t dismiss these recommended jobs outright. Look them over and if you like what you see, apply quickly, since these broad postings will probably attract a high number of applicants.

DON’T forget to reach out to new contacts

Build your network by accepting requests from others and sending plenty of your own. Don’t try to add people who you don’t actually know, but within that framework, keep your list long and your network of contacts wide. Offer as many recommendations and testimonials as you receive.

For more on how to get the most out of your LinkedIn and other social media profiles, reach out to the staffing team at PSU.