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Prospective employers are going to check you out online; there’s no way around it. Forbes reported in 2011 that more than 90 percent of the hiring managers who responded to a Microsoft Research survey admitted to scouring social networking accounts to screen job applicants. Out of the same group of employers, 70 percent of them said that they rejected applications because of scandalous information that applicants revealed on a social networking page or because of the equally damaging pictures that they posted. The good news is that it’s just as easy to get a job offer for having a winning social networking profile as it is to be rejected for having one that’s seemingly unchaste.
5 Appropriate Endorsements
In 2012, LinkedIn added a feature that allows first-degree connections to “endorse” each other’s skills. These endorsements are a great way for hiring managers to quickly learn about your expertise and skills. They also pose an easy way for hiring managers to get the wrong idea about your talents. Use the profile editing tools to hide or delete endorsements that have nothing to do with the skills you truly offer. For example, if you want to work as a manager in a human-resources department, but someone endorsed your “entertainment” skills, delete it.
Employers won’t hire you if they think that you’ll hold them back. This can seem intimidating if you’re a guppy in the hiring pool or have taken a hiatus from the work world. Use LinkedIn to show hiring managers how your skills are relevant and your experience or knowledge is current. For example, if you’re looking for a job in IT, don’t tout proficiency with an operating system that’s obsolete. Instead, list recent certifications you’ve earned, classes you’ve completed, relevant volunteer work, and skills that make you a unique and valuable candidate.
3 Signs of Intelligence
LinkedIn is like an extension of your resume to prospective employers. If you’re like most serious job-hunters, you take time to proofread and edit your physical resume for mistakes (if you don’t, you should). Have the same consideration for your LinkedIn profile. There’s no way that a hiring manager will take your “detail-oriented” skills seriously if the spelling and grammar on your online profile stink. Taking the time to look and sound intelligent on your LinkedIn profile always works in your favor.
2 Consistent Information
When a potential employer stalks you on LinkedIn, the last thing she should see is information on your profile that doesn’t match the information on your resume or application. For example, if your latest work-history entry on your LinkedIn profile is about the time you flipped burgers, but you’ve graduated college and gained work experience since then, take the extra 15 minutes to update your profile.
1 Professional Appearance
While looking hot in your profile picture won’t necessarily earn you any points from a hiring squad, a picture of you at last year’s booze fest or one that resembles Nick Nolte’s mug shot can send your application straight to the rejection box. If you’re trying to convince a prospective employer that you’re a true professional, look like one on your LinkedIn profile picture. Don’t forget to update your picture as your appearance changes.
Make sure you get the gig by avoiding the 5 Things Not to Say in a job interview.
LinkedIn appears on our list of Top 5 Employment Search Engines… but it’s not number 1.