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Maximising Your Use of LinkedIn

LinkedIn is an excellent platform for building professional credibility and getting your name out their in industry circles. It is also a great platform to be on when you are looking for work or in the case that you are a business owner looking to grow and expand your business.

Over the past year, LinkedIn has made many changes to its interface, adding new features to the news feed and profile sections. In this article we will talk about some of the things you can now do with your personal profile to make sure you are maximising your use of the platform.

Above is what you will see when you click on 'view profile' under your avatar image in LinkedIn. The Add profile section (highlighted above) shows everything you can now do with your profile condensed into one space. When you click on the small arrow to the right of the headings in the dropdown list, you will see further subheadings that you can click on to add information about yourself. In this article we will explore some of the new features in this list.

The new Featured section (under About) allows you to add any of your favourite articles, stand out LinkedIn posts, web urls or media. When people are viewing your profile, this section sits just below your 'about' description so its important that if you do utilise this feature that you add only those things you'd like people to know about you first.

Below is an example, using LinkedIn articles only, of how this appears in your profile. You can add as many 'features' to this section as you'd like, and people are able to scroll through them (from left to right) clicking on anything that stands out to them.

The Skills section has also had a recent upgrade with many more skill options to choose from. This section allows you to add any and all of the skills you have obtained over the years of your work experience and career. These skills are then listed on your profile where colleagues and clients are able to endorse you. The image below shows what the skill section looks like on your profile, as well as where colleagues have endorsed.

The Accomplishments tab speaks for itself however LinkedIn have recently expanded this section to include not only honours and awards, but publications, patents, completed courses and projects, test scores and organisation membership. This brings a nice little addition for future employers and HR teams who might be exploring your profile before meeting with you.

Additional Information allows you to request recommendations from colleagues. LinkedIn has recently updated this feature to ensure recommendations are legitimate and based on previous working experience. On requesting a recommendation, you will be asked the level of relationship you have with thr person you are seeking the recommendation from.

Recommendation requests land in the person's inbox to which they can respond to you there. They will not be added to your profile until they have been approved by yourself and you can also ask for changes to be made if needed. Below is an example of how a recommendation will appear on your profile. You can see that you can also make requests directly from this section (in the top right corner).

There is much value in making sure your LinkedIn personal profile is up to date. These days, potential new employers and or colleagues will often go to a LinkedIn profile to learn more about you, your professional skills, qualifications and or to get a sense of your character. Having a recent high quality photograph as your profile picture, as well as a well written description about yourself is important. People want to know what they are getting when they consider working with you and LinkedIn is the perfect online resume for this.

In conclusion, we recommend you spend some time every few months to make sure your profile is up to date and reflects exactly what it is you want others to see about yourself.

If you enjoyed this article you might also like to read 'A Healthy Social Media Presence'.

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