This Is What You Need On Your LinkedIn Profile But Not Your Resume


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It’s no secret that social media is a crucial element to hiring these days. In fact, a shocking 82 percent of recruiters sign into LinkedIn to screen candidates during the hiring process, according to Jobvite. But if you’re simply copying and pasting your well-crafted resume into your LinkedIn profile, you’re doing yourself a career injustice.

While your resume and your LinkedIn profile should share similarities, they are not one in the same. While your resume can have you cutting back on your professional narrative, LinkedIn allows for a 360-degree view of your experience.

Put down your resume and use these six tips to breathe life into your LinkedIn profile:

A strong summary

Go beyond a resume objective. Your LinkedIn profile summary is arguably the most important area of your entire profile. It’s your chance to showcase not only your professional history and skills, but also your personality. Unlike your resume, you have the space and creative freedom to provide readers with a better understanding of you and what actions readers should take next.

Some LinkedIn users prefer a summary that’s short, sweet and to the point; others with a flair for the creative offer up a longer narrative. Whatever you decide, make sure you’re sharing important details about yourself, your key experiences and what excites you.

Don’t forget to meet your goals with LinkedIn. For instance, if you’re seeking a job opportunity, find a way to share it with the reader.

Breadth and depth

Resumes are limited to one or two pages of information. Your LinkedIn profile is the place to add back all of the color that you originally cut from your resume in lieu of space. Forget bullet points; write out your duties at previous positions to better explain your work and time with a company. You can also rewrite your headline to make it more unique and compelling than your current or previous job title.

Details about your interests

Assessing cultural fit is now a big part of the hiring process. Organizations want to be sure that a candidate is both a good skills fit and someone who will fit in with the values and personality of the company. While you shouldn’t be listing your photography hobby on your resume, including that as an interest on LinkedIn tells employers more about you. It shows them that you’re also creative. If that’s something that defines their culture, they’ll be more confident that you’d be a good hire.

Third-party endorsements

Your resume is not a place for references and recommendations, which typically come later in the hiring process. However, recommendations and endorsements are a must-have on your LinkedIn profile. These types of third-party sections about your skills and expertise can speak volumes to potential employers and even your competition within your industry.

Tap into your network, whether it’s a manager or co-worker, to ask for a genuine recommendation of your work. Recommendations also can come from clients, professors, and vendors. But remember that these are professional endorsements. So even if you are connected with your best friend on LinkedIn, if they’re not in your industry or haven’t actually worked with you, it’s not appropriate for them to be endorsing all of your skills.

Engage your network on LinkedIn by endorsing your connections for skills you’ve experienced them excel at first hand. This will likely result in them doing the same for you.

A personal tone

Due to their shortened nature, resumes aren’t exactly rife with personality. This is why you should leave the formal tone to your resume and be more personable online. Demonstrate your personality and accomplishments by using a friendly, engaging voice throughout your LinkedIn profile. This will ensure readers get a feel for your personality and your accomplishments.

A strong headshot

Your face has no place on your resume. But on LinkedIn, a professional headshot can help you stand out from the crowd.

If a photographer isn’t in your budget, you can still snap a nice photo of yourself. Just be sure your background isn’t distracting and you’re dressed professionally from the waist up.

Depending on your goal for LinkedIn, you can set the mood for how you appear in your photo. Go for a gentle smile. When you set your photo on LinkedIn, don’t forget to set the frame so your face fills the majority of it. BONUS: Use a white background, if possible. If not, use your Photoshop skills!

What are some other things that strengthen your LinkedIn profile, but not your resume? Share in the comments below!

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Val Matta
Val Matta
Val Matta, Managing Director of CareerShift, co-founded the company in 2005 to help individuals bridge the gap between education and employment.  As a recognized expert in the field, Val is a frequent speaker on career management, networking, and job hunting strategies.  You can connect with her and the CareerShift team on FacebookLinkedIn, and Twitter.