Linkedin has just unveiled an Embeddable Job Application Tool for companies. This plug-in sure is a great step forward for Linkedin to establish itself at the center of the entire hiring process. Linkedin has already become the favorite hunting ground for headhunters/employers. It provides them such an easy and direct platform to reach out to candidates. With a pro account, one can send inmails to the most promising candidates. Candidates can directly approach the hiring managers and or find people in their network who can help them send their resume to the right person within the organization.
So if Linkedin is on its way to become the preferred platform for employers and job seekers alike, what should these two groups of people be doing to reap the maximum benefits from Linkedin.
Let us start with the job seekers. It is important that your profile is complete with all the right key words. Just as you would write a summary in your resume, be sure to include one in your Linkedin profile. Mention your key accomplishments. Quantify them as much as possible.
While recommendations are important, sometimes too many of them can take the focus away from the ‘meat’ in your profile. Avoid recommending people who have recommended you within the same time frame as they wrote their recommendations for you. Everyone can see the dates and it appears like a ‘give’ and ‘take’ transaction.
Include a photograph in which you look professional and pleasant. Don’t include your pictures from your vacation. Remember Linkedin is for professional networking.
And last but not least, don’t send your profile to every job you see or think might be a good fit. Read the job description carefully and analyze with an open mind if you really fit the bill.
For employers and headhunters, Linkedin provides a great platform to generate the right kind of profiles for the job. So the first step is to know the right key words to look for people. Linkedin provides more than a dozen features to narrow down your search. Use them to find the ‘perfect’ match.
Be sure to use a professional tone in networking/inmails you send to candidates. Candidates who are not interested themselves do forward your communication to people they know might be interested and are a fit. Don’t forget to thank the person for the introductions.
Also, do not send mass emails to all people you find with those key words in their profiles. Remember it is all about building your credibility as a headhunter/recruiter of substance. Spend some time understanding their current job role. Remember everyone is looking for people on Linkedin. I have stumbled upon many Linkedin profiles of people who have included a special note for recruiters. One specifically had a line that said ‘please read my complete profile and send me emails only if the job matches my skills and experience’.
Your own Linkedin profile matters a lot. It should be professional and should be reflective of your credibility for a person to consider responding to your message/inmail. Including your contact details can be a good idea. Just be aware that sometimes you may receive emails from people who may not be your ‘targets’.
For both job seekers and employers/headhunters, the important thing to know is that Linkedin is like any other medium of communication. The usual principles of communication, like knowing your audience, knowing your purpose, following through etc. apply just as much.