5 LinkedIn tips to secure your dream job

Since its launch in 2003, LinkedIn has become a social media giant for professionals. With over 774 million users, having an account is a must have for professional networking. 

Despite this fact, 18-24 year olds make up only 20% of LinkedIn users.

It’s understandable that young people are scared to use the platform. It is like an audience of experienced professionals are watching your every move, laughing and mocking you almost.

However, this is not the case.  

The intimidating cloud of judgement does not exist. Every professional on LinkedIn started from the same position. They know what it’s like to work their way up to the top. They are routing for your success. 

35.5 million individuals have been hired through a connection on LinkedIn. You never know if that intimidating CEO routing for you in the background is going to hire you. 

Furthermore, 87% of recruiters are actively using LinkedIn to search for candidates. 

So yes, it is like an audience of experienced professionals are watching your every move. However, this will benefit you

Every young professional has a duty to themselves to create a LinkedIn profile and actively use the platform. 

However, just having a profile is not enough. There are steps to take that will drastically increase your chances of being seen, or even hired. 

Here are five tips for using LinkedIn to help you secure your dream job. 

1. Write a professional summary

Personal branding is extremely important when it comes to LinkedIn. Recruiters and professionals are on the lookout for someone who will fit their team culture as well as the job description. 

The professional summary is your chance to tell the world what drives you, your career goals, interests and hobbies. 

Not only will it help others to understand you better, but it will help you get found. 

Recruiters search on LinkedIn for candidates using keywords. Headline, job experience and professional summary are all used to show the most relevant candidates to the recruiter. 

Not having a professional summary will reduce your chances of showing up in searches. 

To put it into numbers, a complete LinkedIn profile will result in up to 21x more profile views

Take the time to craft a summary that displays you professionally and personally. It is worth the time. 

Here are some professional summary tips from LinkedIn.

2. Include all relevant experience

As a student or recent graduate, it can be difficult to produce a bank of experience that will impress employers. However, for the majority that is not in fact the case. 

Due to imposter syndrome, many young professionals do not value the experience they have. Which in turn stops them from including it in their profile. 

That six week placement you completed as part of your degree. Your time as part of a university society. That practical group work that you completed most of the work for. These are all relevant experiences. 

Look at everything you have done within and outside of education. Look at the tasks you had. Turn them into transferable skills and include them in your profile! 

These are things recruiters and professionals want to see. 

Yes, that also applies to the part time jobs you had while studying. They may not be in the field you want to work in, but they certainly show you as a strong, employable professional. 

Just two previous experiences will make a professional 12 times more likely to be found in search

3. Interact with others

LinkedIn differs from other social media platforms. On Facebook and Instagram, people tend to become friends with and follow only their existing real life network. 

LinkedIn wants people to network and connect. It is the lifeforce of the platform. Therefore, the platform encourages professionals to connect with each other based on job titles, companies and locations – not just friends and friends by association. 

Therefore, people are more likely to have strangers viewing their posts and interactions. This can be intimidating for younger, less confident individuals. 

Posting for an audience of professional strangers can be terrifying. However, as mentioned, it is not as scary as it may seem. Thus, getting over the fear of posting on your profile is a great place to start. 

However, posting publicly is not necessary. 

Following business, liking posts and commenting will increase your chances of being seen by professionals. Furthermore, business notice when you are actively engaging with their posts. 

Following companies you dream of working with and engaging with their content build a relationship between you and them. When it comes time to hire, you will be at the top of the pile of CV’s. 

4. Complete skill assessments

Displaying skills on your profile will give employers an understanding of your capabilities. Again, these will increase your chances of showing up in searches. Profile skills are also shown when you apply for a job through LinkedIn. 

Why not take it further? Why not prove you have the skills? 

LinkedIn offers users the opportunities to complete skill assessments for some of the skills on the platform.

Completing skill assessments increases the chances of being hired through the platform by 30%. 

5. Ask for endorsements 

Building on from assessment, there is another way to prove your competency to other users. Endorsements. 

Endorsements allow others you have worked with to comment on the skills that you have. Like employer references, but on the platform. 

Recruiters have mixed feelings about endorsements. Most professionals and recruiters find endorsements valuable to have on a profile. However, they are not a major selling point when it comes to the hiring process. 

This does not mean that they do not increase your chances. Endorsements could net you an initial phone call or even an interview. From then on it is up to you to prove yourself and your value to the company. 

One of the major drawbacks of endorsements is the fact that anyone can write them. Therefore, some people out there will have fraudulent endorsements. Do not do this.

Only ask for legitimate endorsements from classmates, employers and coworkers. You never know when a recruiter will follow up on endorsements. Use them to your benefit, not your detriment. 

This applies to your profile, applications and interactions as a whole. Remain professional on the platform. Be truthful at all times. Be consistent in your use of the platform.

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