Your careers adviser has probably nagged you about it, and you’ve probably listened to your friends talking about it as you gear up to enter the real world after university, but how can you use LinkedIn to get a grad job? Well, follow these LinkedIn tips and you’ll be a shoo-in for your next grad role application!
1. Finish setting up your profile
On LinkedIn, you can see how complete your profile is. The app and the website will give your profile a percentage; anything higher than 90% is best. These more complete profiles do 60% better than those incomplete profiles.
This means filling out each section of your profile, from your ‘About’ section to the ‘Featured’ area, and all of your experience, skills, recommendations, and even interests. Essentially, you want your LinkedIn profile to become a dynamic, easily navigatable version of your CV.
2. Show that you’re looking for roles
You can turn on LinkedIn’s ‘Open’ feature when you’re looking for a role. This doesn’t alert your current employer, but it will show recruiters that you’re looking for a role and will allow them to contact you if they feel that you’re a good fit for any of their roles. With this feature, you can also specify what kind of jobs you’re looking for.
3. Use the premium free trial
LinkedIn has an additional package called ‘LinkedIn premium’. This allows you to access additional features which can make or break your job hunt. You can choose to take part in a 30-day free trial for premium (which we’d only recommend once you’ve finished your profile).
This will let you see who has viewed your account, insights on where you rank in job applicants and it will also allow you to contact people who are not in your connections. On top of this, it lets you see any holes in your profile and you’ll be pushed to the top of the list when recruiters are searching.
4. Get an endorsement
LinkedIn allows you to endorse other people, and other people can endorse you. This is similar to a reference, it shows their stamp of approval on your work ethic, skills, etc. Ask your current employer, tutor, or anyone you’ve worked with in the past to endorse you for an extra boost when recruiters look at your profile. Even better if the endorsement comes from a big name brand or well-known person (i.e chancellor of your university, someone within the NHS).
5. Connect yourself
One of the biggest things on LinkedIn is making sure you have plenty of connections. Look through your university and invite coursemates, tutors, lecturers, PhD students, and anyone else to connect with you. The power of LinkedIn is its ability to help with networking. These people will now appear on your feed, and you’re more likely to see any jobs within their fields.
Recruiters will also see your connections when they look at your profile, so if you have a connection within their company, they might ask them about you. This can be a real bonus.
6. Follow your dream companies
Again, this all comes down to networking. If you follow all of your dream companies or any companies that interest you, you’ll be able to see when they’re hiring. You’ll also be demonstrating your interests, morals, and ideals to future employers.
7. Pick a suitable profile picture
When you set up your profile, it’s important that you set up a picture. Those profiles without an image look unfinished, but that’s better than the wrong image. You don’t want a club night group snap or a pixelated Snapchat selfie. Make sure the picture you set as your profile picture is high resolution and suitable for work.
You need to look smiley, approachable, formal, and someone that, ultimately, is worth hiring. Graduation photos are always a safe choice!
8. Be creative
When it comes to writing your headline, be sure to make it something that will stand out. Choose great keywords that will pinpoint exactly what recruiters are looking for, this will help you appear in searches.
Avoid mundane and boring things like ‘student’. Try, ‘aspiring writer and blogger with a flair for the creative industries’ or something similar.
9. Post a lot
Being active on LinkedIn might feel really lame, but posting your success on there helps recruiters to see you’re constantly achieving, learning, and succeeding. Post grades, new jobs, new hobbies, anything that you feel is an achievement. You can post a status or an image and a status, or even a link to an article that’s recently been published.
10. Join LinkedIn groups
Join, read and interact with groups on LinkedIn that interest you or are related to the career path you are looking at. Doing this will help you gain information and knowledge on your industry, and it will get you known within circles that may benefit you later on.
Once you’ve interacted with the groups, you can message other contributors and offer your services or simply connect with them, further building your professional circle.