Your LinkedIn profile is a powerful tool when job searching. For some, this could be the first thing they see, even before meeting you in person. With a good profile, recruiters will find you! You’ll soon be receiving messages in your inbox with great roles you may be interested in.
Profile picture: that’s who I want to work with
Take some time to take a professional headshot. Most smartphones have a good enough camera that you can take something with your phone that will work. Find some natural light near a window and smile! Dress in clothes you would normally wear to work so that employers can picture you in the setting. Present a warm, friendly face to the world that makes a hiring manager think, ‘that’s someone I want to work with’.
What makes a great Summary?
A good summary is easy to scan and features quantified achievements. Write short paragraphs and use bullets if appropriate. Recruiters and hiring managers have limited time to scope out talent – make it easy for them and highlight some of your best traits and work experience in your summary. Think of it as a little cheat sheet all about you as a candidate. Include a few keywords from your industry that reflect the role you’re interested in pursuing. It’ll help recruiters find you when they’re searching LinkedIn.
Experience: done this, worked for them
Again, make it easy to scan through. Not too much text; use white space to help draw the eye to the good stuff (your achievements). Keep the details to a minimum and tell only the best of your achievements; numbers always impress.
Education is always a good thing so feature it prominently on your LinkedIn profile. Did you receive an honour or high standing? Include a note about that too. If you have completed a bridging program at ACCES Employment, include the academic portion of the program in this section. Canadian employers will recognize the school and it will help boost your Canadian credibility!
Languages: the multi-lingual professional
Speak a little Urdu? Understand enough French to get by? Include it on your LinkedIn profile. In today’s globally connected world, speaking more than one language is a hugely attractive skill to potential employers in Canada.
Does your profession require certifications in order to work in the field? Demonstrate your certifications in other parts of the world if you have them. If you’ve started the process to get certified in Canada, include that as well (2015 – present, or certification pending completion). You can also use this section to showcase any complementary certifications you have such project management of workplace health and safety. These are great added value skills for employers and will help put your profile ahead of other candidates.
Have you been honoured with an award in your workplace or by your professional association? Add an ‘Honours and Awards’ section to your LinkedIn profile to showcase your exceptional accomplishment. For some employers, awards mean a lot to their brand. For example, many Canadian employers tout their inclusion of lists of ‘Canada’s Best Employers for New Canadians’. Award-winning employees help to contribute to this image, so make it known on your profile.
To keep your name top of mind, a good profile also means regular activity – liking colleagues’ posts, commenting on stories, and sharing relevant articles and information. Remember, LinkedIn is a social network and is just an extension of your regular communication with your network.