LinkedIn — Your Best Friend in the Job Search

In my last post I talked a bit about how to prepare for phone interviews and some do’s and don’ts during the process. Today I’d like to deep dive into using LinkedIn for job searching.

We have all heard that LinkedIn is a necessity in the modern job search, but how does it work exactly? Most of my friends live on Facebook (millennial over here) and are comfortable navigating social networks. But how does social networking translate to job hunting? Every hiring managers and (almost) every recruiter I talked to/ looked up had extensive, active LinkedIn page. While asking around the crowd at our last happy hour last week, I found out that not everyone was using LinkedIn in their job search. So what’s the missing link?

My hypothesis is that while hiring managers and recruiters live and breath on LinkedIn, not all job applicants are as active on the platform. Or that most candidates know it is an important piece of the puzzle, but still not sure how it applies to their search.

While having a LinkedIn profile doesn’t automatically land you your dream job — it can significantly help you stand out as a candidate. How do I know this? Well, it has helped me immensely in my search with 40- 50% reply rate to job applications. Yup, it’s a crazy effective method that doesn’t need to take too much of your time. Below is a step by step guide to how to use LinkedIn as a powerful job search tool.

Getting started with LinkedIn

  1. Create a LinkedIn account (Pretty easy! Just click here) LinkedIn has a great step by step tutorial that will guide you through the basics.
  2. Already have a LinkedIn? Great! Increase your social network. Add friends, colleagues, acquaintances, that one random person you met at a networking happy hour. Have a pile of business cards? Great, add those folks too! The awesome part about increasing your network is that you never know where people will end up working or where their network ends up working!
  3. Spend some quality time on your LinkedIn profile and fill out each section with relevant information and links. Forbes has a great article here on how to get started.

Note: Tag lines, Summary Section and Work Experience are really important. Some recruiters will spend 3 seconds on your resume before they look you up on LinkedIn to learn more.

A hiring manager at our last happy hour said “If an applicant has a great LinkedIn along with a solid resume, I automatically put them on top of the pile”.

4. Ask recommendations from previous co-workers and managers. Similar to Amazon and Yelp reviews — let others tell your future employer what awesome candidate you are.

5. Join professional groups relevant to your industry and interests. (Trust me this will come in handy later).

Pro-Tips

  • Share your LinkedIn page with friends to give you feedback
  • Spend some time identifying keywords that are relevant in your field. Taylor your experience with relevant industry language. For example, mine are “Partner Marketing, Demand Gen, Events”.
  • Make sure your resume information is consistent with your LinkedIn. Numbers, Dates, Dollar amounts match and are up to date.
  • Include links to videos and websites of your work.

Taking your profile to the next level

So you have a stellar LinkedIn with awesome recommendations, great content and up to date social network. What’s next?

  1. After you identified which jobs you like and companies you want to work for (Glassdoor, LinkedIn Jobs, Indeed, Angelist.Co are great resources), look up who in your network works or can introduce you to anyone who works there. Send them a LinkedIn message or FB message if you are friends on there or Email if you have their email. Most companies highly value internal referrals. Even if the LinkedIn connection is not in the same department, they can forward your resume to the right person.
  2. Look up various queries on LinkedIn to identify who will be working on your team and who are the recruiters hiring for the position. If you type “People Who Work At Google” in search, you will see everyone who works at Google on LinkedIn. Or you can even customize “Recruiter at Google” to see who specifically you need to reach out to.
  3. Write a short intro InMail to the recruiter, hiring manager for the role.
Hi Joe Bob,
Hope you are doing well. I just saw that Awesome Company is hiring for an Awesome role and would love to see if I would be a good fit. I recently left a role as a Super Cool Lead at a Cool Company, working closely with a really cool team to build relationships with top awesome people.
I have 5+ years of extensive experience in coolness, managing awesomeness, and greatness for both cool and awesome companies.
I love traveling, meeting new people and eating copious amounts of tacos. Let me know if you have a minute to chat. Happy to send you my resume.
Best!
Tamilla 111–111–1111 | tamilla@coolcompany.com

Pro-Tips

  • AHHH WAIT — But LinkedIn only allows InMail with a Premium account! True, but some recruiters will have their Inmail open (I know crazy, it’s like they want you to email them! ;)

OR you can get the 30 day trial and get 2 InMail credits (which you can use on your top choices)

OR you can guess their direct email (Mailtester.com allows to see if the email you are guessing is correct, firstname@company.com or firstlast@website.com often work)

OR Another LinkedIn hack is GROUPS. If you are in the same LinkedIn group, you can send unlimited InMail messages to members! A lot of recruiters are in the same groups like (The Recruiter.com Network, On Startups — The Community For Entrepreneurs). You can check out which groups I belong to here. Easy way to learn what groups they belong to is to check their profile (yup, that easy!).

Note: Please avoid spamming members of the group and be mindful of cold emailing hiring managers and recruiters. Keep it short, sweet and to the point.

Hope these methods are helpful. If you have any additional tips, or tested out some of these tricks — please reach out and tell me how it went!

Found this helpful?

If you live around the Bay area and are looking for career advice/ becoming a career mentor — feel free to join our The Struggles is Real FB group and attend our next happy hour! Contact — thestruggleisreal.jobs@gmail.com

— Tamilla

A single golf clap? Or a long standing ovation?

By clapping more or less, you can signal to us which stories really stand out.