LinkedIn, for better or worse, is turning/has turned into a CV database and a prime source of candidates for recruiters.
If you are planning to use LinkedIn as a tool with which you can secure your next contract or permanent position then it’s important for you to know how recruiters use LinkedIn to find you.
One fatal trap I’ve noticed many contractors falling in to recently is changing their job title to reflect the fact they are actively looking for a new role.
When you change your job title from “Business Analyst” to “Actively looking for new opportunities – available 26th August”, your intention may be to advise your network that you’re on the lookout for a new role, which they may or may not notice due to the quagmire that is the LinkedIn news feed. What you are unintentionally doing is restricting your profile from coming up in any searches made for Business Analysts.
People both in and outside of your network will be searching using job titles as the most rudimental search functionality. You should, at all times, and regardless of your availability, keep your job title as your job title.
If you want to advertise your availability (which is a very good idea), do so in an update or in a post or, if you absolutely need to put it in your job title, don’t do it at the expense of your actual job title. Something like, “Business Analyst – available 26th August”, would work well and you’ll not be eliminated from people’s searches.
On a relevant note, LinkedIn is making it more and more difficult for people to get in touch with other people without paying for higher and higher subscriptions. InMails, I feel, are being ignored now due to the high volume being sent due to LinkedIn’s recruiter function. It’s essentially the mass mail replacement service and some recruiters aren’t being quite as selective as in the past when InMails needed to be used wisely.
To that end, if you are actively looking for a new contract or permanent role, I’d heartily recommend putting your contact details somewhere on your profile, even if it’s just a personal email.
Your connections will be able to see your contact details but those with whom you’re yet to connect will not. If you’re looking for a new position and someone you’re not connected with has a suitable role but no way of contacting you that’s going to cause problems.
In your profile, under the heading “Additional Info” you can update your “Advice for Contacting”. This information is visible to everyone whether they are a connection or not. I’ve lost count of the amount of times I’ve noticed someone who is actively looking for a new role but has not made it easy for me to get in touch to actually offer them one. This could be the difference, in this competitive market, between you getting a call about that new role and the phone not ringing.
If you want to tell us of your experiences using LinkedIn to find a job then please drop us an email – firstname.lastname@example.org – we would love to hear from you.