Why LinkedIn is a fresh grad’s best friend

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Did you know that 80% of the jobs are never advertised?

What?! Preposterous! How are fresh grads (like you) supposed to find out about the jobs?

One answer to that is using a LinkedIn Profile.

Sure, many of us have heard our teachers and seniors extol the benefits of the platform. But how many of us truly know its benefits and potential?

An equivalent of a professional version of Facebook, our LinkedIn profile is like an online resume for recruiters out there. Specific keywords can help recruiters find you more easily, and making changes to some of its elements can make you more marketable.

We’ve scoured the net and collated some of the best tips to help you develop an all-star LinkedIn Profile.

Read on! (If you’re lazy, in other words, TL;DR, refer to your infographic just below!)

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Choose a Good profile photo

Although we’ve been chastised never to judge a book by its cover, the reality is that appearances do matter in certain circumstances.

Remember struggling to choose a nice profile photo for your Facebook account? This should be the same for a LinkedIn account. The first thing recruiters see is your photo – use your profile photo to portray yourself in a better light. An appropriate photo can convey an accurate personal brand image.

Here are some tips to take note:

  • Choose a photo that looks like you
  • Is Professionally taken
  • The face needs to take up 60% of the frame
  • Look the part – dress accordingly
  • Choose a non-distracting background
  • No soft toys and other props

This article has 5 examples of good profile photos that you can browse through!

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Professional Header with targeted keywords

Your headline tells recruiters how you see yourself, who you are and what you can deliver. Having an effective headline is critical as these words are often picked up by the search engine in LinkedIn.

Good headlines will draw recruiters in and help you with your chances of landing your next job!

Unsure of what to do? You can follow these suggestions:

  • Use the Linkedin Option: “See what other users in your industry are using!”
  • Go to the “Jobs” tab on Linkedin to look for the positions being advertised. Take note of the keywords.
  • Don’t use abbreviations
  • Add your value proposition in your header – what you can offer and bring to the table e.g. [Job Title] Helping X do Y
  • Tailor headline towards the specific industry / job you want to obtain
  • Skip the jargon!
  • Be interesting and throw your personality into it (but not too much)

This article gives a list of good (and bad) headlines you won’t want to miss!

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Concise Summary with media links (if any)

In the olden days, people write biographies about themselves. In the digital age, we’re given a box (with a limit of 2000 characters) to fill in a summary of who we are and what we do to attract recruiters who are spoilt for choice with the influx of job-seekers.

Use your summary to tell your story! Keep to these tips too:

  • Stick to 3-5 short paragraph
  • Lose the jargon
  • Write how you speak
  • Show lots of white space
  • Use keywords
  • Add rich media
  • Proofread

Here’s a stunning example of someone who wrote their summary pretty well!

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Source: NTUC U Future Leaders, powered by Black Marketing

Check out more LinkedIn tips by NTUC U Future Leaders, which also organised LinkedIn clinics to help PMEs brush up their LinkedIn profiles and brand themselves better.

Connect with others + Get Recommendations

LinkedIn is not just a digital resume – it’s a social network! Get out there and connect with others. Be it a colleague at your workplace, an old university friend, your parents or your distant relative, connections are important in the LinkedIn community.

If you’re looking for a mentor or to network, you can connect with individuals through their “connect” button. Once the other party accepts it, you can choose to move the connection offline!

It will also be ideal to get recommendations from your managers or supervisors from your workplace. These recommendations can help spruce up your resume and add to your credibility.

Xand’s LinkedIn profile is filled with recommendations and feedback from various people in various industries. This helps to bolster her reputation.

Other important details

It’s advisable not to just skim through your LinkedIn profile. Go down to the nitty-gritty and explore their other functions.

Did you know you can customize your URL and this boosts the chances of recruiters finding you? Adding skills and your volunteering experiences can also help increase the chances of you being shortlisted for a job opening. Most importantly, leaving your contact details (if you prefer) will be a great way for recruiters and interested individuals to contact you.

Explore the page and discover what else you can do to optimize your LinkedIn page. After all, this one page summarizes who you are and leaves an impression of you to others.

Check out our infographic for some useful tips!

I’m done with my profile! Now what?

Now that you’ve finished making all the changes, you’re ready to share your online resume with the world! You can apply for jobs by sending in your digital resume at various job search portals such as:

Wishing you all the best with your job search! (: