Making your LinkedIn profile work for you

Photo by Nathana Rebouças on Unsplash

Making your LinkedIn profile work for you

I recently came across Katie Jacquez’s highly useful post I’m a designer at LinkedIn, here are 4 tips to attract recruiter with your profile. This post provides a valuable insight into how recruiters search for profiles, and how you can tune your profile to work for you, merely by adjusting the Headline, About and Skills sections. I’ve been constantly frustrated in the past with the number of recruiters on LinkedIn who approach me, asking if I’m interested in roles which have little to do with my skillset, and I’ve previously put it down to their use of keywords to find me, and their inability to actually bother to actually read my profile. Turns out that yes, recruiters are time-poor and do resort to finding people using keywords, but you can control those keywords and messaging to ensure that you get more useful offers.

I’d previously worked with my Headline and About sections, but Katie’s piece helped me to even focus further on the initial messages I wanted to convey to recruiters who only had time to scan those sections. The real power, however, comes in the Skills section, as this acts as the central resource for keywords by which recruiters search for viable candidates for their roles. I had previously passed it off as not very useful, and had filled it with various things I was good at, as well as some things which I was passable at, but I felt helped pad out my experience. It was only after reading the post that I realised that perhaps the reason why I had recruiters coming to me with development jobs in Python or C++ was because I had some time ago stated I knew a bit of JavaScript (a mistake, as I’m still not terribly good at it), which caused the recruiters to assume that I was interested in working with other languages. What’s more, looking at the order of the skills on my list, I realised that I didn’t have the ones I wanted to show off the most at the top, and there wasn’t really an order of preference. No wonder I kept on getting confused recruiters, asking if I had experience in conducting user research, when that was languishing lower down my list!

By making these simple changes, I managed to greatly improve the quality of responses from recruiters, with one of them even yesterday complementing me on how comprehensive and useful she found my profile. Of course, there are still those who don’t bother to consider my level of experience and offer me junior design roles, or care to read the first line of my About section that states I only add people I’ve worked with, but at least I haven’t been offered another coding job since I made the changes.

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