As you may have heard before, networking is the name of the game. If you are a recent graduate looking for your first full time job, you are going to need all the networking you can get. Luckily for you, LinkedIn is as an easy tool created to help you network with past and hopefully future employers.
Here are some tips on how to make (and get) the most out of your LinkedIn account:
1. Make connections.
Professors, co-workers, employers, and classmates—all can contribute to your job search by referring you to people they may know are looking to hire someone just like you. But remember, the site is a professional network, not a social one.
2. Get recommendations.
Good recommendations on your account is another easy way to advertise yourself and attract employers, but make sure they are all from professional contacts and not friends or family members. The more you have, the better (some say having at least ten is a good start). If you recently left an internship or job, get one as soon as possible so the person’s memory of your work is fresh in their brain.
3. Read email alerts.
Make sure your e-mail alerts are turned on. You’ll be notified when employers in your field are hiring and get a head start on applying for the position.
4. Join groups.
Joining groups can link you to professionals within the same groups, especially if you participate in discussions to get yourself noticed.
5. Follow companies or organizations of interest.
When following a company or organization that interests you, it allows for you to receive breaking news and up-to-date information on the organization. Which will be a good thing to keep up on if you are trying to get hired at a specific company. Following your school on LinkedIn will let you know where recent alumnae have started their careers.
6. Constantly update your profile.
Always keep your profile up to date, completed and filled with key search terms. Employers are constantly sifting through profiles to search for the perfect candidate, and yours may be skipped over if it is lacking your most recent internship or your full set of skills. Not to mention, when an employer receives your resume the old fashioned way, they might look you up on LinkedIn and want to see even more details about you and your experiences.
7. Search for future career paths.
Look at profiles of those in positions you want someday. You will be able to see what skills they have listed—along with previous positions they have held. This is a great way to get a sense of what direction you should take your career in order to land this “dream” job.
If you haven’t already made an account, do it as soon as possible to begin your professional networking; it may make all the difference someday when you’re applying for the job you’ve always wanted.