Creating a Stand-Out LinkedIn Profile

We’ve written at some length on crafting your perfect resume, but in this post, we wanted to focus on an increasingly important tool in your job search armory – your LinkedIn profile.

LinkedIn is rapidly becoming a “must have” addition to the more traditional presentation route of the regular resume and cover letter. The site has streamlined the job search and recruitment process on both ends. If you do not have a LinkedIn profile yet, then this would be the time to create one and get it going for a boost in your job search and career. If you already have a profile, you need to optimize it, to get the best out of your account.

In other articles, TAG delves further in to some of the more personal platforms such as Facebook and Twitter, and how you can utilize them to your professional advantage. But here we want to give you some tips on how to make your profile stand out from the crowd a bit more.

Starting from the top

If you want to edit any information on your LinkedIn profile, you can just hover the cursor on the field to find the edit button. Click on the button, edit the information and do not forget to save the changes. When you are assigning a name to your profile, keep it simple so that it’s easy for potential recruiters to find you. Don’t try and be too clever with what you think are attention-grabbing titles. Just be direct, crisp and professional in what you use.

What makes a good Headline?

For any employer or recruitment professional looking at your profile, it is so important that you get this part right. By default, LinkedIn will always fill in your headline with your current job title and employer. And unfortunately, the vast majority of candidates just leave it. Don’t. This is what they call “prime advertising real estate.” And in this case, what you are advertising is yourself. Remember there are days when those employers and recruitment professionals are skimming through so many possible candidates that they do not want to waste their time on headlines that seem boring, confusing, smack of desperation or try to be too clever for their own good. They want something that grabs their attention.

Here’s an example from TAG’s specialty field of Healthcare Recruiting.  Instead of the prosaic “Nursing Home Administrator, help those searching by expanding the Headline to focus on your unique qualifications:

“Nursing Home Administrator – Operational, Regulatory and Staff Management Expertise with Exceptional Resident and Family Satisfaction Record.”

Be specific

Always keep in mind who you’re trying to reach with the headline, and what you can do to stand out from your competition. The more specific you are, the better. If you are a nurse that specializes in a particular area, let those employers and recruitment consultants know right off the bat:

“Caring and experienced Registered Nurse with a history of helping pediatric cancer patients and their families feel at ease through treatment and recovery.”

Get the right profile picture

It might seem obvious but don’t stick to a profile picture from one of your other social accounts and go “oh that’ll do.” LinkedIn is a professional network so it is best you stick to a clear picture in a professional background. It is easier to remember faces than names, so it is a good way to leave a positive mark on a recruiters’ memory.

Use the multimedia functions

LinkedIn allows you to add videos, documents, and photographs to your account. Use them to your benefit wherever you can. Put up a presentation clip, particularly one you know you have done a good job on. Add pictures that are relevant to your work. If you have a short video clip that, put it up there. In short, be creative with these features as they can immeasurably boost your profile.

Add a work summary

The perfect work summary will attract more eyeballs and interest to your profile. Give a comprehensible and interesting outline of your expertise and experience. Mention certain examples to add weight to your words. Recommendations from fellow colleagues and bosses count a lot, so do get those.

Get Connected

Network and add more connections. The more you connect, the wider your professional network becomes. LinkedIn is an incredibly powerful tool but remember, your profile is a living, breathing thing! Don’t leave it alone.  Continue to refresh and improve it, and if you give it a bit of time, you will see it boost your career.

Talent Achievement Group is a Healthcare Recruiting firm based in Calabasas,CA.  For more information, visit us @ www.tagachieve.com For further reading on all things career-related, TAG recommends www.themuse.com