You’ve likely been told countless times that your LinkedIn profile is a powerful tool - but what does that actually mean? How can you make sure your profile is working for you and not against you?

As recruiters, LinkedIn is often the first place we look when considering a candidate. In this post, we will share our tips on how to optimize your LinkedIn profile so that it catches the attention of recruiters - getting you one step closer to landing that dream job! 

First, tell a story. What do you want the main takeaway of your profile to be?

Your LinkedIn profile is one of the most important tools you have when it comes to networking and job searching. It's important to make sure that your profile is up-to-date and tells a story about who you are and what you're looking for.

When a recruiter looks at your LinkedIn profile, they should be able to get a sense of who you are as a professional and as a person. Your profile should tell a story about your career journey and background, as well as highlight your skills and experience.

The main takeaway of your LinkedIn profile should be that you are a competent professional with a solid career path. Even if you've made pivots and career changes along the way (which is totally normal!) there should be a theme between your roles, or explanations of why you pivoted. For example - if you moved from a product design role into an engineering role - let the reader know why. Did you find that your skills better matched the strengths of a technical role? Lastly, keep your profile updated regularly and make sure to showcase your skills and accomplishments.

Spend some time writing your LinkedIn bio

Most recruiters will spend some time looking at your LinkedIn bio before deciding whether or not to contact you, so it’s important to make a good impression in the bio section. Think of your bio as how you would introduce yourself in a job interview. If a recruiter were to say, "tell me about yourself" - how would you answer that question? 

Here are some tips for writing a strong LinkedIn bio:

1. Keep it brief and to the point.
2. Highlight your key skills and experience - but don't go overboard in listing programs you're proficient in, or skills you possess. That's what you can use the skills section for.
3. Use active language that paints a picture of what you do. Avoid filler words or excessive use of adjectives.
4. Include links to your work or a portfolio if possible.

Include descriptions for each of your roles

By writing well-thought out descriptions of each of your roles, you can increase your chances of being contacted by a recruiter and landing your dream job. As a starting point to writing compelling descriptions, we suggest writing down the answers to these questions: 

1. What is something that was unique about this experience or position? Think of the industry, your tasks, or a particularly interesting project you worked on.

2. What did you learn, or learn about yourself in each of these roles? Perhaps you discovered that you have a passion for fullstack software development - combining both backend and frontend experiences - when you made the transition to a fullstack role. Include a sentence about why this excited you. Recruiters love to see passion and enthusiasm! 

3. What are some quantifiable experiences you had from each of these roles? For example - can you share any results around revenue percent increases you were able to bring a company, or cost savings? Or perhaps you improved efficiency for certain processes, or saved your department time? Recruiters and hiring managers love to see measurable results and outcomes, so try to include these metrics whenever possible.

Optimize your profile for keywords related to your job search

Be sure to use keywords that will help recruiters find you when they are searching for candidates with those specific skillsets.

Start by writing down the skills, programming languages, platforms or other keywords you know are relevant to your industry, AND you have experience in. Sprinkle these throughout your profile, including some in your bio, and even more in your skills section. This will help ensure that your profile comes up in searches for those keywords.

Secondly, find some job descriptions of roles you're interested in, and read through how they talk about the skillsets they're looking for. Do they describe a platform a slightly different way than you do, or have you been using acronyms in certain instances where they list the full word? Take notes, and see how these skillsets match and compare to yours before adding to your profile Reading through job descriptions may also help jog your memory in case there are certain skills or knowledge you forgot you possess.

Get active on the platform by posting and engaging with others' content

Like and comment on posts from your friends and connections consistently, and you'll start to rank higher in search results and get more engagement on LinkedIn. Instead of leaving comments like "Interesting!" or "Great job!", try to think of 1-2 sentences that show you've read what they shared, thought about it, and want to contribute your own opinion. Leaving insightful or helpful comments that add to the conversation will be much more helpful for their network as well as your own.

What are some of your favorite tips or ideas for using LinkedIn during a job search? Let us know!