How LinkedIn can add value to your job search.
As we have just crossed the half way mark of the initial projected ‘lockdown’ period in New Zealand, many of you will now be seriously considering your career options. Some will be looking at how they return to work, others will be getting to grips with working remotely on an ongoing basis, and an ever increasing number will be faced with the prospect of having no job to return to.
If you fall into the latter option, i.e. no job to return to, now is the time to take some steps in preparing yourself to re-enter the workforce. Without a doubt the job market will be highly competitive and therefore it’s absolutely essential that you prepare as best you can. As Ben Franklin so eloquently put it ...
“by failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail”.
Did you know that LinkedIn, the professional social networking platform, has actually been around longer than Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, and Instagram? LinkedIn is the largest professional network in the world with over 575 million users worldwide. Having a LinkedIn profile provides you an opportunity to get your name and face in front of hundreds (or even thousands) of professionals in your industry and should be a key part of your job search. Given the current ‘lockdown’ situation the world is facing, it's more relevant now than ever.
LinkedIn has a Job Board. Here you can search jobs by keywords and location. Additionally, you can set job alerts based on your career interests to regularly receive email updates and stay in the loop.
There is also the option letting recruiters know you're open to hearing about new opportunities. If you do have a job to return to and are wanting to discreetly let recruiters know you are open for new opportunities, there is an option to ‘hide’ this invitation from others at your current company.
LinkedIn provides an opportunity to network.
With so many jobs not even being advertised, I can’t stress the importance of networking enough. Linkedin is a superb way to network – particularly during ‘lockdown’ when the traditional coffee catch up meetings are prohibited for the foreseeable future.
Through LinkedIn, you can network and build relationships with mutual connections, others who work in your industry, and connect with inspirational leaders who can introduce you to others.
Linkedin allows you to research companies and employees.
As you know, if you're applying for jobs you can access vacancies from a number of job boards such as Seek and Trade Me Jobs - there really are plenty to choose from. However, LinkedIn offers you the opportunity to research and access company information. Many companies maintain their own LinkedIn pages where they update company information, and showcase current projects and success stories. This allows you as a job seeker to get a good feel for the culture and the people. You can make sure it’s a good fit before submitting your application and can additionally gain valuable information that is useful in your job search and interview preparation.
However, like many things in life – having a poor LinkedIn profile can be worse than not having one at all!
Don’t fall into the trap of setting up a LinkedIn profile that does not portray you and your skills in a good light or does not support your job search. You need a great LinkedIn profile that accurately represents you, highlights relevant skills and experience, and helps you to connect with the people who can help you with your career.