LinkedIn is the world’s largest talent pool with 3 million active job listings. Let me show you how you can tap into this treasure trove of job listings to find your first — or next — job in tech.
Why Use LinkedIn?
Recruiters will not find you on Pinterest, Facebook or Instagram. Instead, 94% of recruiters will use LinkedIn to vet potential candidates. Almost half of all recruiters only use LinkedIn for social outreach.
Over 20,000 US companies use LinkedIn to recruit. Most of these companies will be using recruiters to fill these open positions. You want to get the attention of these recruiters because they can put your resume in the hands of the hiring managers at these companies.
How Do Recruiters Use LinkedIn?
Recruiters use a product called LinkedIn Recruiter to tap that pool to fill the 3 million active job listings.
LinkedIn Recruiter is the tool that allows recruiters to seek candidates that meet the job requirements for positions they are trying to fill. Here are some of the benefits recruiters receive with this product:
Access to Everyone
Users can see all the information in a person’s profile only if they are a 1st level connection. The amount of information you can see is reduced if the contact is a 2nd level connection. You have limited information you can see for a 3rd level connection.
LinkedIn Recruiter allows recruiters to have access to people on LinkedIn that users of the site do not have. With this product, recruiters have direct access to everyone on LinkedIn.
You don’t have to reach out and become a connection to a recruiter for them to see and access your profile. Instead, they will see this information. You just have to structure your profile in a way that makes it easier for them to reach out to you about open positions.
Advanced People Search
LinkedIn Recruiter allows recruiters to hone in on the perfect hire using LinkedIn’s powerful search tool. This tool allows recruiters to search for candidates based on their:
- current position
- past position(s)
7 Requirements to Become a LinkedIn All-Star
Now that you understand what resources are available to recruiters using LinkedIn Recruiter, you need to improve your profile so that you can easily be found by recruiters looking to fill open job positions.
LinkedIn provides different levels for your profile based on the information it contains. The highest level is a LinkedIn All-Star. If you meet all 7 requirements to reach All-Star level, you will find yourself on the radar of recruiters. Here are the 7 requirements to become a LinkedIn All-Star.
- A profile picture
- Your industry and location
- Up-to-date current position
- Two past positions
- Your education
- Your skills
- At least 50 connections
LinkedIn does not specify what you should or should not have in your profile picture. Regardless it should be something that is professional in nature. Here are some examples of very poor profile pictures:
Industry and Location
When you edit the top section of your profile you will be able to enter your current location and the industry in which you work. Your location is defined by a zip code that you provide.
If you are looking to move to a new area for work, be sure to specify the zip code for that area as your current location and not where you are currently living.
You will select your industry from a drop-down list.
The next step is to enter your current position where you work. When you enter this position, you are able to enter a description of the work that you do at that company.
I would recommend that you use keywords that are relevant to the position that you want in the description of the work that you do. The reason being that recruiters will search for selected keywords. You want to make sure your description includes those potential keywords.
Two Past Positions
LinkedIn requires you to have two previous job positions listed in order to meet the requirements for All-Star status. If you are trying to break into a new industry, it is ok to list past positions that were not in this industry.
If you are a recent graduate or somebody that does not have two previous positions, you can meet this requirement by listing a job where you might have worked on a part-time basis while you were a student.
You must list something for education. If you did not attend college, then you may list your high school. If you only completed an associates degree, then list that university. If you only completed a semester or two at a university, then list that university. If you did not attend a university then you can include online training sites like FreeCodeCamp, CodeSchool, Udacity etc.
Your Skills (minimum of 3)
Skills is another area that recruiters are able to search for using LinkedIn Recruiter. I would recommend putting in all the skills that match the technology area that you want to get a job.
You have the option of ordering this list. I would put the skills that you definitely are seeking in a job at the top. The other reason for having the most important skills listed first is when people view your profile, LinkedIn will give them an option to endorse you for your skills. They will only be shown the top four listed skills.
At Least 50 Connections
You need to make connections to at least 50 people. If you are just starting out with building your LinkedIn profile, it may seem impossible to get 50 people to connect with.
If you graduated from a university or high school, you can search LinkedIn for people who graduated from the same school. You can then reach out to them and ask them to connect with you.
You can get your family members to be your connections. You can also ask your co-workers and friends to connect with you.
If you are still struggling to find 50 connections, then search people that have the title of “LION”. LION stands for LinkedIn Open Networker. A LION is a LinkedIn user who understands the power of having a large LinkedIn Network. LIONs will connect with almost anyone on LinkedIn regardless of whether they know, trust, or even respect the person. You can easily find at least 50 LIONS on LinkedIn and connect with them.
Having Recruiters Contact You
If you have met all the requirements for All-Star status, then your profile will start appearing in searches that recruiters create with LinkedIn Recruiter. Once their search returns your profile, the recruiter will send you InMail to see if you are interested in the opening they are trying to fill.
If you are interested, respond to the recruiter. The recruiter will collect your resume and submit it to the hiring manager at the company.
This is how you can use LinkedIn to get your first — or next — job in tech.
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