United Blog – LinkedIn 101: How to Advance Your Career Using LinkedIn

When working to advance your career, LinkedIn is more valuable now than ever. With over 645 million users in more than 200 countries around the world, LinkedIn can help you get your dream job regardless of where you are or the type of job you want.

LinkedIn is a combination of your living resume and a place to network with other professionals, search for career opportunities, and showcase your knowledge and expertise. As the largest professional social network, having a presence on LinkedIn can help advance your career. Keep reading to find out how!

Create Your Profile

Creating your profile is the first step to advancing your career using LinkedIn. As your living resume, your profile gives you the opportunity to show off your education, skills, experience, and more. Building a complete and professional LinkedIn profile is necessary before applying for jobs on LinkedIn because recruiters will look at your profile when you apply. Here is the list of what to include:

  • Photo – Use a professional looking headshot to help you get noticed.
  • Name – Add your first and last name to be easily found via search.
  • Headline – Include a headline that describes your career, such as “Medical Assistant”.
  • Location – Include your current location, or the location where you’re applying for jobs.
  • Contact information – List your email address, phone number (if you want to include it), and the link to any website or portfolio you have.
  • Background Image – Add a professional background photo that is relevant to your field, such as a photo of you in scrubs if you work in the medical field.
  • About – Use this section to talk about your career, including past experiences and future goals.
  • Experience – List your experience including the organization, your job title, dates employed, and a short description of the job you performed.
  • Skills – List your specialized skills, including both hard and soft skills.
  • Education – List your education, including the school, degree, and years attended.
  • Licenses and Certifications – List all licenses and certifications you hold, including the name, issuing organization, and dates valid.
  • Volunteer Experience – Include volunteer work, including the company, your role, and a description.
  • Accomplishments – List your accomplishments, such as awards, courses, projects, articles, and additional languages you speak.

As recruiters and hiring managers search LinkedIn for potential job candidates, they use keywords to find ideal candidates. For this reason, be sure to include these keywords in various sections of your LinkedIn profile as you are writing the content, as this will make you appear more in search results.

Build Your Network

If you’re just starting out in your career and do not yet have a large professional network, LinkedIn is here to help, as it provides the perfect place to build your network. Start by adding people you already know. Import your phone and email contacts into LinkedIn and send connection requests to them. You can also add teachers, fellow students, alumni from your school, supervisors, and coworkers.

For companies that you want to work for or are well-known in your industry, follow their LinkedIn pages as well so that you see their open positions first. You can also join LinkedIn groups that are relevant to your career in order to meet and connect with other professionals in the groups.

Ask for Recommendations

Recommendations on your LinkedIn profile from supervisors and coworkers can make a huge impact when trying to advance your career. When potential employers see these, they get a sense of how great you are at your job and how valuable you are to others.

When just starting out in your profession, you may not have many people you can ask for recommendations yet. Even if your past work experience is in a different field, begin by asking previous supervisors and coworkers for recommendations.

If you’re currently in school, ask teachers, classmates, and people you’ve worked with at your externship site for recommendations. Even though you haven’t worked directly for other students, they can still recommend you for things like a positive attitude, work ethic, and teamwork skills.

Share Content and Engage

As the largest professional social network, LinkedIn is the perfect place to share your knowledge and expertise. Relevant photos, videos, articles, infographics, and status updates are all great to share. Sharing content from other people and pages is great as well.

Engaging with other professionals on LinkedIn by liking, commenting, and sharing their posts will help you build positive relationships with them. Congratulating others when they get a promotion or have a work anniversary, and reaching out to people individually are also great ways to engage. For example, if you’re applying to a specific job, you can message the recruiter who posted it with questions.

Search for Job Opportunities

With your awesome profile and great recommendations, you’re ready to search and apply for jobs on LinkedIn. Finding the perfect job for you has never been easier because you can search based on many different criteria, such as job title, keyword, company, location, industry, experience level, and more.

If you’re serious about a job, send a connection request to the recruiter who posted the job. This shows that you’re interested in the position and have done your homework.

There is a “Career Interests” section in LinkedIn that allows you to let recruiters know you’re open to new career opportunities. Turn this on and add your preferred job title, job type, and location. Doing this increases your chances of recruiters contacting you because they already know you are interested.

Fast-Track Your Career Today

Now that you’re on the way to advancing your career using LinkedIn, get the training and certifications needed for your dream job. United Career Institute is here to help you succeed with fast-track training programs in Medical Assisting and Medical Office Administration. Call (724) 515-2440 or request information to get started now!