I am currently a struggling- grad looking for work and believe me having a LinkedIn is a necessity. Even if you don’t get recruited through it, it shows people that you’re serious about getting a job and you can apply to some jobs via the site. The main thing I have found is that you don’t want your LinkedIn to be boring. Just like your CV, you don’t want your LinkedIn to be a block of text. Luckily, it’s really easy to add media to your profile to spruce things up a bit.
Firstly, you want to add all the basic text.
You want to add an interesting summary of your key skills and include things such as your blog etc. but also your school life, and previous jobs and experience.
Now you want to build upon the text that you’ve got.
If you have worked for a huge company such as BT or John Lewis etc they need no explanation. However, if you (like me) prefer small companies it’s a nice idea to include some information about the company itself- i.e.
“Random Bakers is an artisan bakery that specialises in bla bla bla, it was founded in such and such a year and has grown to become a something or other. I worked there as _ and my main responsibilities were _”
Next, you need to build upon this further.
It’s a good idea to include ‘highlights’ of your work to show what you improved upon or special projects you worked on etc this helps you to showcase your work without sounding too boastful and helps you with the actual process of thinking about what you should include on your profile. You can use this for your time in education too.
“Random Bakers is an artisan bakery that specialises in bla bla bla, it was founded in such and such a year and has grown to become a something or other. I worked there as _ and my main responsibilities were_ .
Highlights of my time there included when I improved _ by doing_ when I was working on such and such a project.”
Now for the fun part- Adding Photos.
If you have any photos at all of the things your proud of, put them on. Obviously, if they match up with jobs that’s perfect and you can just add the images to each job by clicking on the ‘add media’ (a small button near your job title that looks like a square with a plus sign). This is the same for anything that happened at school or Uni. If your pictures don’t fit neatly in any of these sections you can add them the same way into your summary. For example, I used these pictures of me working in South Africa on my summary because it shows experiences and abilities that stand out from the crowd.
Now for the fun part continued- Adding Media.
I always add the website of each company I’ve worked for, so people who are interested can read more about each company and it just makes the profile look more interesting.
Additionally, as I work on social media sometimes I add a screenshot of what I’ve worked on. -this goes for certificates, letters of thanks, literally anything that would help your profile stand out.
Finally, now it’s time for the awkward part- Recommendations and Endorsements.
Yes you read correctly, it is awkward asking old employers and colleagues to recommend you but you do really need to do it. Once you’ve added them as contacts all you need to do is to go to the top of your profile and click on the drop box next to where it says ‘view profile as’ on the blue button then click on ‘ask to be recommended’ and chose the right person and job- usually I send them a quick text or email to follow up as a matter of politeness.
When it comes to endorsements my best advice would be to look for a job advertisement in your field and see what they’re looking for, their ‘ideal candidate’. Obviously, don’t add anything that you’re not good at but it will help you to see what employers look for. You may not consider your good time-keeping as important, but if you see that employers list ‘punctuality’ as something they’re looking for then it’s a good idea to add it to your profile.
I really hope this helps you guys find inspiration! It’s so hard to find a job and we just have to do everything possible to keep at it. Good luck with your job search, hopefully, we’ll all be employed soon!