by Sarah Perryman
LinkedIn is an easy and important way to build and maintain a professional network by letting you connect with friends, fellow students, colleagues, professors, and bosses.
1. Fill out as much information as possible.
You can make this whole process easier by using your resume as a template. Add your contact information, skills, volunteer experience, research projects, your personal website— just keep it strategic and relevant. As you edit your profile, LinkedIn will give you suggestions on how to improve it.
2. Get a great picture.
Your picture doesn’t have to be you in a suit with a white background, but it does need to be high-quality and appropriately professional. Use the pictures of professionals in your industry as your standard to match.
3. Add everyone you know.
Add your family, your friends, and people you’ve worked for in the past. Endorse them for things you know they do well, and nine times out of ten, they’ll endorse you in return. You know those company representatives you talked to at the job fair? Add them, too.
4. Don’t be afraid to ask for endorsements and recommendations!
Ask your friends and colleagues to endorse your skills. If your boss or project manager compliments you on a job well done, ask them if they’d mind writing you a recommendation. It’s great social proof of the good work you do.
5. Be active, not stingy.
Endorse the connections who endorse you. Congratulate people on new jobs and anniversaries, like and share the posts they write and share interesting posts of your own.
6. Keep up-to-date with your industry by following companies and joining groups
Following companies will help you keep tabs on what’s going on in places where you’d like to work and whether they’re hiring. Joining groups is a great way to widen your network by discussing your interests with other people in your university or industry.
7. Apply for jobs
LinkedIn makes searching and applying for jobs super simple— most postings have one-click apply and give you the opportunity to attach your resume and cover letter as well.
Want a more in-depth look at ways to use LinkedIn as a professional tool? Check out this handy article!