Since the development of the web, job searching has vastly changed to the point in which job seekers have to incorporate social media into the job hunting in order to reach success and land on their desired job. Job recruiters are now using different social media where they can easily check publicly posted resume of registered users. LinkedIn is a leading online professional network in which vast job boards and abbreviated curriculum vitae are posted (Skeels & Grudin, 2009, p.97). Currently, around 313 million people from different parts of the world are registered to LinkedIn. The following image shows how LinkedIn has grown over the years:
Since there are so many LinkedIn profiles created up to this day, competition is very high and thus, making your profile stand out is a must. Choosing a professional photo is the first on the list, it needs to be a good headshot and preferably nothing else on the background. Making an eye-catching headline is the second thing you must focus on since that’s what potential employers first see as they conduct searches on the LinkedIn database. It is important to take time to brainstorm for the headline because you can only make a first impression once. But remember, according to Kaplan and Haenlein (2010), to remain humble, honest, and respect the social media rules (p. 66). It is also highly recommended to add different elements such as videos, blogs, presentations, and other media that tells more about yourself. Whatever you upload on your profile, make sure it addresses what your target audience care about. Remember, a LinkedIn profile is not just a resume, but also your online presentation that gives you your cyber reputation.
Just because employees conduct their own research for potential workers, you shouldn’t fully rely on it but instead, start marketing yourself! You should follow your target companies so that you will remain updated on how the industry is doing and if there’s any new job openings or other opportunities. Set your status on a regular basis to let people know what activities you’ve had participated in and post meaningful thoughts regarding events pertaining the industry. Additionally, use the “Advanced People Search” feature with your chosen companies to find who the hiring managers are and to learn what causes they care about. Make an effort to interact with them and post questions or even better, answer questions they have on their profile. By doing this, they will get to hear your perspective and discover how smart and clever you are and perhaps, you will get a recommendation.
Landing a job has never been solely dependent on one’s knowledge and skills, it is also based on your connections. Networking is a very important part of job searching and LinkedIn has actually made it easier. Through LinkedIn, you can find people in the same target field as yours. The trick is to keep your first-degree network fairly big, a friend who has a hundred connections can help expand yours. If colleagues have not yet joined the site, make sure you invite them by simply downloading your address books from any of your electronic mail. Invest in getting to know more people, it will pay off.