LinkedIn’s stock opened at $45 a year and a half ago. It now sells for $120 per share. Unlike Facebook, one of the primary reasons it has done so well is that LinkedIn found its “killer app” early on and built a business model around it.
For recruiters, LinkedIn is the largest (now 200 million members) and most current database of business professionals in the world. For job seekers, it’s a portal into new opportunities, connections and references.
To learn more about its capabilities as a recruiting tool, we posted an open account supervisor position for our D.C. office on LinkedIn. The resumes have been coming directly to me for the past month. The applicants are unfiltered by a recruiter or the HR department, so that means I felt the direct shot of the power of LinkedIn. As the hiring manager, I learned a good deal about using the online tool and how job candidates can better marketing themselves for posted positions.
Because of the volume generated by LinkedIn, hiring managers have the luxury of trying to find exactly what they are looking for without having to dig too hard to find it. We quickly scan the email summary and the attachments. As a result, candidates need to pay close attention to these six areas:
- Actually read the job description – Hiring managers and HR personnel spend a great deal of time defining the requirements of open positions. Take the time to adapt your resume to highlight those areas that best match what companies are looking for. Don’t make them connect the dots, because they won’t. They’ve already moved on to the next candidate.
- Customize your cover letter – Tell us why you’re the right candidate for the position in the cover letter, especially if you can’t link it on your resume. Make a compelling case as to why we should spend additional time looking at your resume and background. A generic cover letter is a waste of time and a sure way to take yourself out of the race.
- Know that we will check you out – If we find someone we like, we’ll spend time checking that person’s LinkedIn profile (beyond the summary below that appears in our inbox), the current and former employers, as well as the candidate’s social profile. For example, a resume that caught my attention was eliminated from the process because I couldn’t find the candidate’s last two employers on the Web. The learning? Companies go out of business or are acquired all the time, so make sure your resume reflects or notes that change. Know that we will “Google” you.
- Tips 4-6 and Complete Forbes Article