For students and alumni alike, LinkedIn is THE professional networking website. What can it do for you and why should you participate?
1. LinkedIn (linkedin.com) can house your public professional profile. When people want to check you out professionally, they google you. What will come up at or near the top of the results is your LinkedIn profile. The profile can contain far more information than would typically be in a resume, including expanded summary and experience sections, space for recommendations, and the ability to link to your work products such as PowerPoint presentations, speeches, blogs or websites.
2. LinkedIn lets you maintain and expand your networking contacts easily in one place, and because LinkedIn is a "visible network" it allows participants to see who others are connected to. This feature facilitates networking conversations and network expansion.
3. LinkedIn can be used to research career paths, job titles, employers of interest, and your connections to people or organizations. Use the Advanced Search function to find people doing the job you want in order to learn more about what they do and how they got there. Research and "follow" employers of interest. Use the 'How you're connected to...' function to discover connections to people or companies of interest.
4. LinkedIn allows participants to learn about or keep up with industry trends through participation in Groups or Answers.
5. Job opportunities. LinkedIn enables you to learn about jobs through participation in Groups or through LinkedIn Jobs. Recruiters learn about you through your LinkedIn profile (they do keyword searches) or through your participation in Groups (recruiters look to these self-identified pools of experts for potential candidates).
For a critique of your LinkedIn profile or to discuss how you personally can make the most of LinkedIn, contact the Career Center at 717-245-1740 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on LinkedIn:
Introduction to LinkedIn
Creating a profile
Creating a profile - students and recent graduates - Step-by-step guide
Using LinkedIn Group
9 Tips to Use LinkedIn to Help You Get Your Ideal Job http://www.gottamentor.com/viewAdvice.aspxa=379&utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=20090527
How to Leverage Social Networking to Get Your Next Job – from The Ladders