How to create a great LinkedIn profile

LinkedIn is a well-used work based social network. You can create a personal profile which can help to promote yourself to potential employers, recruiters and other connections. It is used by both individuals and businesses, providing a platform to share useful content.
LinkedIn is a great tool for your career development. You may not even be actively looking for a new role, but recruiters and employers often use LinkedIn to find talent as they can see what you have achieved. Creating a strong profile and keeping this up to date can really help with your professional persona.
What should you put into your LinkedIn profile?
Time
The first thing you should do is dedicate time to creating and updating your profile. The more time you have put in the more likely a recruiter or employer is of finding you for a suitable vacancy.
Photo
A clear, friendly and professional photo is all you need here. A good tip is to check what other style of photograph other people in your industry have chosen to represent themselves, look at what they are wearing and the situation they are in.
Job title
Always include a job title even if you are searching for a role. Include the type of area you are working in and ‘seeking new opportunities’ as a workaround for your current situation.
Headline
You can use this space to either state your current job title or you could be a little more creative and include a statement on what area/industry you specialise in and what skills you can bring.
Use Keywords
Think about the content of the job title of the type of roles that you would like to be considered for and include this throughout your summary and profile. These are likely to be the keywords that recruiters are searching for within LinkedIn so it will help your profile in search results.
Utilise your summary
Your Summary is where you can really showcase your experience so keep it focused. Ideally it should be 3-5 short paragraphs which include details of the key areas you specialise in, any qualifications you have and the main industries you work within.
It’s also useful to include your accomplishments, if you have any video or imagery to demonstrate your achievements include it as a picture came tell a thousand words.
Or just show examples. You can include links to websites you’ve worked on for example, literature you’ve produced or articles you’ve written.
Use the summary as an opportunity for people to get to know you and your personality. Avoid talking in the 3rd person.
If you do any extracurricular volunteer work, projects etc. include these as it paints a picture of the type of person you are.
Use your connections
Try and get recommendations from your connections, this can work well when it’s related to a recent project you have completed. A good mix of skills and experience will really add value to your profile so aiming to collect one per month is a good place to start.
Status Updates
Keep status updates regular. This could include recent work accomplishments or a blog article you have written. Using your status will enable you to position yourself as an expert in the area of work you specialise in.
LinkedIn Groups
Joining LinkedIn groups that are relevant to your industry can give you great insights into market developments. They can also open up connection opportunities and give you thought provoking content which you can share on your own profile.
LinkedIn is a great way to showcase your skills, experience and knowledge of the industry and specialism that you work within. Just invest some time into it and when you do feel that the time is right for your next move you will have a head start.

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