AT FIRST glance, LinkedIn is just Facebook — minus the fun. But LinkedIn offers an array of features you won’t find in other social media sites. For example, it:

•  Gives companies in Singapore a venue to advertise themselves and post job openings;

•  Gives job hunters a credible list of leads;

•  Helps you project a professional image, one that can convert potential employers’ interest to an interview; and

•  Gets you on the radar of headhunters looking for specific qualifications, as LinkedIn is the largest professional network in the world.

If you are serious about your job search, it is time to pay close attention to your LinkedIn
account.

Today and tomorrow, we feature 10 LinkedIn features you should take advantage of:

The headline

By default, LinkedIn makes your latest job title and company name your headline. That is well and good, if your current employment in Singapore is your greatest selling point.

But if it’s not, you can actually change your headline through the edit button under your name (many people don’t know this).

Headhunters don’t have time to open every profile they see, and a powerful headline gets attention. For instance, there’s a huge difference between “Accountant, Jolly Rogers Company” and “Management CPA, specialising in Cost Control for the Fortune 500”. Guess which one lands the job?

Connections

As with the real world, a fair amount of opportunities and job leads come from people you know.

Ideally, your network on LinkedIn should mirror your physical network. Having a decent number of first level connections gives you access to a large number of people, whom you can contact during your search for a job.

If you stayed within your field, your college buddies are probably in the same profession, and are in a position to give referrals. Peers can recommend your profile to their company.

Linking with company hiring managers and human resource personnel and external recruiters in Singapore is also a viable idea, though note that not all recruiters accept requests from strangers. Check out who you know in a company, and get someone from the inside to open the door.

Endorsements and recommendations

Connections to clients, suppliers, peers, co-workers and bosses can beef up your profile with endorsements and recommendations.

Endorsements are a validation of the skills and expertise listed in your profile, and they appear as a positive number (for example, +16 endorsements for Legal Research).

Recommendations, on the other hand, are comments written by your contacts to describe the quality of your work and character. The more endorsements and recommendations you have, the stronger your profile will appear.

 

Article by Kay Vardeleon, an associate writer with Sandbox Advisors, a firm that helps people with careers, job search and training in Singapore. For more information, visit www.sandboxadvisors.com