What do you mean you don’t have a LinkedIn profile? - 4th May 2017

The job hunting world is ever changing, especially with the expanding growth of social media in our lives. I’m always surprised when I speak to candidates and they don’t have a LinkedIn profile. Or if they do have one, they have just a handful of connections and barely any information shown.

Your LinkedIn profile is now a very visible extension of your CV. The benefits of using LinkedIn from a business or networking perspective are well known, but for job hunting, having a well thought out, and active LinkedIn profile really helps. It’s an invaluable marketing tool for you as a prospective candidate.

Putting a lot of effort into your profile when job hunting can really pay off. By outlining your career history, you are backing up what a prospective interviewer (recruiter or employer) will see on your CV. But more that, if you’ve managed to collate lots of skill endorsements from other members and former colleagues, and you’ve signed up to industry related networks and forums, piece by piece you’re boosting your profile and ‘identity’ in a way that your CV can’t do alone. To impress further, you can also write articles and post updates, which if related to your work, current affairs or your interests make you look like you’re informed and have your finger on the pulse. The cherry on the cake will be your connections. If a prospective employer sees that you’ve got lots of shared connections, it instantly makes you look like a candidate who knows ‘their world’.

Why does all this matter? It’s important because before an interviewer or recruiter meets you, they’ll no doubt have a look at your online presence. If they can’t find you online, it raises questions. Is this person tech savvy? Are they really who they say they are?

A professional looking LinkedIn profile that shows your relevant experience, connections and endorsements gives you credibility. If you want to go into a sales role or are looking to move into a new sales position, having a LinkedIn profile that shows you have a large number of connections, especially if they’re shared is hugely advantageous. Where you are looking at a sales role that involves networking and knowing key people and players in your market, such a Business Development Manager, not having a LinkedIn profile will look odd.

So, if you’re on the hunt for a new job or itching to make a move in the future and you don’t have a LinkedIn profile, now’s the time to put in some effort and create one. With your career history, ensure it mirrors your CV. If you already have a profile but you’ve not updated it for a while, log in and freshen it up. Also, have a look online as there are plenty of blogs and websites that give you some tips on how to make the most of your online profile.