Career | Making LinkedIn work for you

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By now, everyone knows LinkedIn is essential for your career. But with 400 million worldwide members, you need to stand out to land the job of your dreams.

Having a simple LinkedIn profile is not enough to get your dream job. In the face of increasing numbers using the professional networking tool and competition for roles intensifying, job seekers need to be more proactive and clever when using LinkedIn.

Having a professional and up to date profile picture is the easiest and first step to make. Wear business attire and ensure the image is cropped correctly.

Include a detailed summary of your career. Aim to tell a compelling story about yourself that includes quantifiable achievements and keywords that are applicable to jobs you are seeking. If you are seeking a new career path, include that in your summary so employers know exactly what you are looking for.

Utilise the Skills and Experience section. For some, this endorsement section may be annoying and meaningless but it is here to stay. As such, you should use it to highlight your specific skills that you can bring to any company.

Flesh out the experience section. Include your duties, responsibilities and achievements in each of your roles to date. However, you do not need to be exhaustive. There are some jobs not relevant to your current career that you do not need to include, or some that are too dated.

Customise your URL so that it will help Google search for your name. This, in turn, will allow employers and headhunters to research you easier.

As with all suppliers and products, people seek recommendations from others. LinkedIn is no different. Approach former employers and co-workers to write a recommendation. They should include specifics about skills and accomplishments.

Finally, connect with as many people as possible in your chosen industry. This broadens your networking opportunities and thus allowing you to reach out to others that may help you, or give you your next career break!