Finding a job is no longer simply about using job search engines, listings, industry publications and your immediate friends and relations, it is about using modern social and professional networks to help build up professional contacts to get ahead, and the best and most popular network for the job is LinkedIn.
LinkedIn is a social networking site with a professional edge that helps you build a network of industry-specific contacts and build a personal profile to help get yourself noticed. With over 150 million members there is no other service which offers you so much potential, but how exactly should you use LinkedIn and make the most of it to find a job? Let’s find out.
Use the Resume Builder
LinkedIn’s resume builder helps you bring together all the information on your profile into a true resume with the available site resume templates. You can edit your resume whenever you like, and your resume is given a custom URL so you can easily deliver it to professional contacts.
Search for Contacts
There are two ways to find contacts on LinkedIn; either by meeting with people somewhere else and then searching for them on LinkedIn, or by searching for people you do not know by search for companies and positions instead of names. For example, you can search for a company name and job title, and you will be given a list of people who match the criteria. In most cases you will not be able to message the people that crop up. At best you will have a second degree connection with them through a contact you already have, and if so then you can get your contact to send your message onwards to them. Otherwise you will have to do a little social detective work to find the person’s contact details.
Make Your Situation Clear
If you lose your job or get laid off and you find yourself back on the market, the first place to let people know is on LinkedIn. It is highly important to choose the right words however, with the terms ‘laid off’ or ‘fired’ very inappropriate to use in your headline, though you can be more frank with your situation in your status update. Being unemployed is often an advantage on LinkedIn because it shows your availability with recruiters, so let them know you are available and looking for new opportunities.
LinkedIn JobInsider Toolbar
It is well known that knowing someone within a company increase your chances of landing a job in said company, and the JobInsider toolbar helps you do this. This toolbar can be installed onto your chosen web browser, and when you search through job listings the toolbar will let you know if you have any professional contacts within that company.
Follow Company Updates
Make a list of all the companies you would like to work in, and connect with them on LinkedIn so that you keep updated with any business updates posted by these companies. Companies will also post new job listings and other opportunities.