How to get the most out of your LinkedIn profile

Your LinkedIn profile functions as your extended resume, and a majority of recruiters nowadays prefer it over traditional CVs. This is why it’s very important to have your LinkedIn profile public, updated and focused on your current purpose – getting hired at a startup.
First thing to remember when building your LinkedIn profile is, that the recruiters look at your profile for approximately 20 seconds. With these tips, we want to make sure that these 20 seconds at your profile count.
 

Profile picture and headline

Within the first second of opening your profile, the reader makes a subconscious first impression about you by looking at your profile picture, name and headline.
First, your profile picture jumps out, and the reader later uses it to remember you by connecting the picture with the rest of your profile. You’re also more approachable, since you’re not just a list of accomplishments and past positions, but an actual human being with a face.
Second thing that is noticed is your headline. Don’t be too dull, and try not to be too funny either. You can already catch the reader’s attention by pointing to the specific field you’re currently working on or interested in pursuing.

Previous positions

Your most recent role is the most interesting to the reader and that one naturally gets the most attention. Have a self explanatory title (even if it wasn’t the official one), be specific about your tasks, responsibilities and explain what you achieved and learned. Also write down what technologies and tools you used in your work, because the recruiters use certain buzzwords to find fitting talent.
Since you’re now applying for jobs abroad, remember, that the people looking at your profile won’t probably know some the companies you’ve worked for in your home country. Briefly describe the company by writing for example ”X is the biggest software house in the Nordics” or ”Y is the fastest growing Finnish startup in building automated hand sanitiser dispensers”.

Summary

After checking out your past positions, the reader will scroll through your LinkedIn summary. In this section you can tell a bit more about who you are professionally, and shed more light on your main projects and interests.
The most important thing is to keep the summary relevant, easy to read and simple. Since the reader is eying through this section in only a few seconds, catch his/her attention with attractive, well structured text. Use paragraphs, special characters and add links to your projects to make it more memorable.
Avoid writing sentences like ”I’m a social problem solving multitasker with a self starter attitude!”. Focus on things you’re passionate about and interested in learning and pursuing.
Adding keywords to the end of your summary helps the reader to see your skillset with just one look. The keywords can be coding languages, tools or methods you’re either familiar with or interested in learning. You can also add a separate ”Skills:” section for the things you’re already confident with. These can also help you get found in search engines.
 

Quick tips:
  • Update the default profile URL. You can easily do this from your settings. A good formula is: linkedin.com/in/fistnamelastname
  • Add links to your portfolio and other projects.
  • Customise your linked connection request message. A small but a powerful move!
  • Ask your friends to read your profile and give you personal feedback. They sometimes know you better than you do.
  • Be active! Like posts that interest you, join groups and keep your network updated.
  • Recommendations and endorsements from previous colleagues/classmates/friends look good on your profile. Remember to give some to get some.

 
Hope the tips here were useful, and you are now ready to upgrade your profile so that the browser will spend at least an extra 10 seconds reading it!
 

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