I (Malin) had never understood the point of LinkedIn. Sure, it was fun to follow my friends’ career progress and see what they were up to during the day, but I hadn’t expected that it could also lead to rapid career changes. A part of me also found LinkedIn to be stressful; it was overwhelming at times. I had no idea what to post, and everything I wrote felt too much like bragging. Since I had already, after my internship, practically been offered a position at Procter & Gamble after my graduation, I also thought that I didn’t need LinkedIn. But at the same time, I didn’t dare to rely on the offer coming to fruition given the uncertain outcome of the pandemic.
So, when I had just started my final year of the Master’s program in Engineering, I stumbled upon an evening lecture titled “How to Maximize Your LinkedIn Profile,” which changed everything.
When my last semester had just begun, I started receiving updates from LinkedIn: “Your profile is getting more views.” Fortunately, I had updated my profile according to the tips I received during the lecture because now I had also been contacted by a recruiter from a pharmaceutical company who found my profile interesting! We began the application process, which ultimately resulted in an offer. The same thing happened a few months later when a recruiter from Amazon reached out and suggested that my profile would be a good fit for their new positions in Sweden. I started their application process and landed my first job on Amazon’s expansion team just one month later.
So, don’t underestimate the importance of having an updated LinkedIn profile. Even if you feel like you’re in the right place right now and not actively seeking a job, there are opportunities just around the corner that you may not even be aware of! Soon, you might have a message in your inbox with your next exciting career opportunity. The LinkedIn algorithm rewards a lot of information – the more fields you fill in, the better, but make sure to be relevant, specific, and concise!
Below are some tips that I’ve received, mixed with my own experiences:
- Profile Picture: Choose your profile picture carefully. A friendly and approachable photo is preferred. Your picture should convey the feeling and impression you want to make.
- Heading: Write a brief headline that not only describes your current role but can also include key skills or indicate that you are open to new challenges.
- About Section: Share a brief personal statement about yourself, ideally 3-4 sentences. Focus on your aspirations, character traits, or background. Writing it in English can help attract a wider audience.
- Experience: If you don’t have much work experience, showcase any relevant activities or roles, such as volunteer work, university event organization, or internships. Describe your role, responsibilities, and achievements in concise bullet points.
- Education: Emphasize your engineering education, highlighting what it means to you personally. Use a more personalized approach rather than simply listing facts.
- Skills: Even as a student or recent graduate, you likely possess various skills. List relevant skills, both soft and technical, such as “Problem Solving” or “MatLab.” Try to include 3-5 skills, and encourage friends, colleagues, or acquaintances to endorse them.
- Accomplishments: Don’t shy away from listing any awards or honors you’ve received, even if they seem minor. Mention any awards or recognitions you received during your studies or from your summer job, as they can boost your profile’s visibility.
A few last things!
- Avoid Buzzwords: Instead of using overused buzzwords like “team player,” “dedicated,” or “leadership,” provide specific, personal examples that illustrate your skills and competencies.
- Completeness: Fill out every section of your LinkedIn profile to improve your chances with the algorithm. The more information you provide, the better.
- Request Feedback: Don’t hesitate to seek feedback from friends, family, or organizations like Womengineer. Having someone review your profile can offer valuable insights and suggestions for improvement.
- Highlight Your Value: As a highly sought-after engineer, make sure your LinkedIn profile reflects your true value and potential to prospective employers and connections.