A strong, updated LinkedIn profile is one of the most important tools in your job search arsenal because it:
- Makes it easier for recruiters and potential employers to find you
- Helps you make an outstanding first impression with them
- Builds your professional brand and expands your professional network
We've gathered our favorite tips provided by LinkedIn experts on giving your profile a facelift.
- Use a professional headshot.
Here are a few guidelines to follow:
• Be the only subject in the photo, not a cropped group shot
• Your face should be in focus– it’s fine if the background is slightly out of focus, but your features need to be sharp, not blurred
• Wear appropriate professional or business casual attire
• Keep your head straight and upright
- Create a punchy headline.
Along with your photo, your headline is the first thing people see on your LinkedIn profile. Use this area to speak directly to your target audience, including phrases or keywords they might be using to find you.
- Update you Summary and Experience.
Tell your personal professional story, demonstrate your expertise and show others why you’re someone worth knowing. Be sure to include keywords and phrases that highlight your best skills and improve your visibility in LinkedIn and Google search results.
- Showcase your work
Nothing shows your quality of work to potential business contacts better than rich, tangible examples. Upload or link to previous work, such as a list of jobs places, articles/blog posts, presentations, images, and websites, and give people a reason to engage with you.
- Get recommendations.
Let your network speak for you. Get recommendations and endorsements from colleagues, employers, and job seekers & clients who can speak to your abilities and contributions.Try to get a new recommendation quarterly. When you are ready to reach out, don’t do so directly through LinkedIn. Instead, send a message from your email account asking if it is OK to request a LinkedIn recommendation. This will:
• Make it more likely that you will get a recommendation– often people ignore or don’t see the messages that come from LinkedIn
•Give you the opportunity to influence what your reference says– in your email, tactfully include the words and concepts you would like them to include, and offer to supply a rough draft.
Here are a couple of examples of how to write an email asking for a recommendation:
I hope all is great with you. I would like to reach out to you through LinkedIn to request a recommendation for the work I did when I was when I was on your team/ for the work I did to fill your company’s open positions. The scope of work and the people I placed at your company are a great example of the work I want to showcase.
I know you are really busy, so I’d be happy to send you a draft recommendation you can edit (or of course, just ignore).
Thanks in advance for your support.
I hope all is great with you. I would like to reach out to you through LinkedIn to request a recommendation for the quest a recommendation for working with me for to find the next step in your career.
I know you are really busy, so to make it easy, feel free to just quickly answer the following questions. I can draft a recommendation you can edit.
• Why did you work with me?
• How did I help you?
• Would you be happy to work with me again?
Of course, be authentic. Don’t suggest phrases that are not accurate or that your reference would feel uncomfortable saying. As with all things related to personal branding – authenticity is essential.
- Specific steps in LinkedIn:
• Draft a very brief (2-3 lines) paragraph and email it to the candidate/client via the Ask to be Recommended button on their LinkedIn profile.
• In your profile, scroll down to Recommendations and click on “Ask for a recommendation.”
• Choose the role for which you want to be recommended
• Identify the person you want to recommend you (from your connections). You can add up to three people, but it’s best to only include one person, customizing each request
•Identify your relationship to them and what their role was at the time
•After you receive the recommendation, you can decide whether accept it and add it to your profile. Repeat this process for the people on the prioritized list you prepared in step 1
• Remember to send your thanks
- Make yourself easy to find - Customize your public profile URL to increase your chances of appearing in search results and make it easy for people to find you.