You may be actively searching for a job right now, or you may be passively keeping your ears open for opportunities that happen to come your way. You may even be perfectly content with your current situation and you aren’t likely to leave even if wild horses drag you, or a potential employer makes a very enticing offer. In the first case, you may see fairly obvious reasons to update your LinkedIn profile. After all, almost any employer who takes the time to review your resume will probably also have time for a five-minute internet search.
But it may surprise you to hear that you should be updating your LinkedIn profile in the other two circumstances as well. In fact, you should probably be updated your profile every year at about the same time, no matter what else is happening in your life. Employed, unemployed, happy where you are, actively looking for something else, it doesn’t matter: When anyone looks for you online, they’ll definitely review your social and professional profiles, and if you have the golden opportunity to curate and control what they see, use that opportunity wisely.
Here are few tips to keep in mind.
Your brand is always your brand, it’s always active, and You, Inc. will never go out of business. So keep the public-facing side of your company looking sharp. Small things can go a long way, such as renewing your photo so it shows your current age and clothing style. You also want viewers to know that you haven’t set up a profile and then abandoned it completely. That’s a perfectly normal and reasonable thing to do, but if you’re not interested in LinkedIn anymore, take your profile down. You can always put it back up later. An abandoned social profile is like a weedy abandoned house; it gives off a forgetful and neglectful vibe.
Your profile should reflect your interests.
When you set up your profile, you were dying to find an entry-level job in the field that captured your interest. But guess what? That was five years ago, you’re way past the entry level, and you’re not even in the same industry anymore. Your heart and career have taken a turn, or several, and your profile should keep up, or why have one? Use the profile as a tool to bring you closer to what you want, not what you wanted in a different era of your life.
Your profile should help you show off.
Your most recent job should appear at the top of your history, not the job you had three jobs ago. That job was a feather in your cap at one time, but your current work does a better job of helping you shine.
Your contacts may enjoy hearing from you.
If you haven’t done much on LinkedIn in a long time, chances are your casual contacts do not hold you at the top of their minds. But your announcement about your new job, your updated photo, your freshly posted comment, or your quick outreach to them directly will get their attention and remind them of your best qualities.
Talk to the Job Search Pros at PSU
For more on how to use LinkedIn to move your career forward, stay where you are, or go wherever you want your professional life to take you, contact us at PSU today or view our available positions here.