This may seem a bit alarmist but from our perspective, as professional recruiters, CVs are increasingly becoming obsolete and in time, could just as easily be assigned to the recycling bin, with online professional networks such as LinkedIn becoming the meeting place for job seekers looking for new opportunities.
This is advice we are constantly sharing with executive and governance professionals that we work alongside to enhance their professional brand and assist with their career pathway. The question we are generally asked in response is, “so, what does a good LinkedIn profile look like?”.
Here are some simple tips to get started, with some help from our friends at LinkedIn.
1. Put your best face forward
Including a picture on your profile page will result in 21X more profile views and 9X more connection requests. Consider having your profile picture done by a professional photographer. If you are doing it on your own – make sure it’s a current photo and have your face fill about 60% of the frame. Don’t forget to smile, you want to look approachable and friendly – and importantly, professional. In addition to your photo, include a background image that’s relevant to you and grabs attention.
2. Make your headline stand out
Most people use the headline (which appears under your name) to list their job title. But this is prime real estate so use it to your advantage and customise your headline to reflect who you are and make it unique to your personality.
3. Enhance your summary
This is the free text space that appears in your introduction. Use your summary to list your goals, passions, accomplishments, and tell people why they should connect with you. Make sure you write in the first person – third person summaries sound impersonal.
4. Build credibility with recommendations
Recommendations are a great way of demonstrating your skills, competencies and experience – they also introduce your colleagues, clients and wider connections. Recommendations are date stamped on your profile page so make sure you spread out requests over time.
5. Help your connections find you
Once you’ve made some improvements to your profile, make sure you share your page in all your communications. Include a link to your LinkedIn profile in your email signature or from the profile on your company page. You can also customise your LinkedIn URL so it’s personal to you and easy to remember.
Online networking sites like LinkedIn provide so much more flexibility in terms of demonstrating who you are, your personality as well as your experience and accomplishments – more so than a paper CV. When it comes to recruitment, hiring for culture-add is a key requirement and LinkedIn provides a great vehicle to help achieve this. Plus, factor in that by 2020 nearly half of the workforce will be comprised of Millennials, so new rules for ‘CVs vs online’, will apply.
We’ve only just scratched the surface with these tips, if you are looking for direction and assistance with creating your personal brand to tap into exciting opportunities, get in touch with us. We’d love to chat.
To stay on top of current recruitment trends and technologies follow Decipher Group on LinkedIn.