3 Surefire Ways to a Better LinkedIn Profile
Dean Ku M.A. '09
Uncertain of how to improve your LinkedIn profile? Not sure what will actually make a difference to recruiters? There’s a lot of advice out there about LinkedIn and how to improve your profile, but here are three surefire ways to get results—all backed by data, research, and feedback from recruiters.
1. Use a Better Profile Photo
Simply having a photo on LinkedIn is a must. LinkedIn profiles with photos get 21 times more profile views. The next level up is having a professional headshot taken. First impressions are important, even online.
TheLadders.com, an online job-search service, conducted an eye-tracking study with 30 professional recruiters over a 10-week period that tracked online tasks including LinkedIn profile reviews. The study recorded and analyzed where and for how long a recruiter focused on a candidate’s LinkedIn profile. The researchers discovered that recruiters spent an average of about 19 percent of their time looking at a candidate’s LinkedIn profile picture!
2. Make Accomplishment Statements Stand Out by Adding Numbers
Employers are looking for candidates who have clearly made an impact at work. The best way to prove your value is to add numbers and stats to quantify results or to highlight how organizations benefited from your efforts. Numbers speak louder than words and will make you stand out more. This is what the former SVP of People Operations at Google said about making accomplishments stand out:
"Every one of your accomplishments should be presented as:
- Accomplished [X] as measured by [Y] by doing [Z]
Consider the following two descriptions of the same work, and ask yourself which would look better on a resume:
- Studied financial performance of companies and made investment recommendations
- Improved portfolio performance by 12% ($1.2M) over one year by refining cost of capital calculations for information-poor markets and re-weighting portfolio based on resulting valuations"
–Laszlo Bock, former SVP of People Operations at Google
3. Make Sure Your Profile Is Mobile Friendly
Some 57 percent of LinkedIn users access LinkedIn via a mobile device. Make sure your profile summary and experience sections are easy to see at a glance. Instead of using dense text, break up large blocks of text and use bullet points.
Long and beautifully written narrative is great for a book, but not for your LinkedIn profile. It could potentially be a roadblock for recruiters who want to quickly assess your qualifications- often with a mobile phone. Recruiters interviewed by Fast Company stated: “No one has time for a long, dense summary […] your copy should be easy to read on small screens.”
Check out TheMuse.com for more tips on what recruiters will be looking for on your LinkedIn profile.