Monday, January 19, 2015

The Linkedin Question


Do You Even Need It?

Linkedin is a bit confusing. Everyone says you should have one, but the purpose it serves can be a bit confusing. Especially since you are inevitably going to be connecting with your mother. 

LinkedIn is officially meant to replace Business Cards, although it hasn't. It seems to serve the purpose of recruiters and job applicants pretty well. It functions as a job listing site where you can follow specific companies you are interested in, and interested companies can contact you based off your past experience listed on your profile.

However, this affects graduating seniors more than it effects college-age interns. Although you still should get Linkedin - especially senior year - the purpose stagnates during your internship years. Instead of allowing you to learn about Internships (although you have this site for that, tbh), it serves as a fact-checking source for employees to make sure you aren't lying on your resume. Since your Mom and Facebook friends are likely your connections on Linkedin. 

Although you won't use it for much during your interning years, there are several things you can do to ensure your Linkedin makes you look professional, connected, and a prime candidate for getting recruited on Linkedin when you graduate! 

Step 1: Update, Update, Update! 

You should update every single position as soon as you have finished being Trained or have attended Orientation. Do not update before letting other companies know that you have already accepted another internship or position.

On that note, be sure to add accurate and concise descriptions. You can copy them from your resume.

Step 2: Include Everything

Whereas on Resumes you are limited to your most prestigious or relevant experience, Linkedin can list all of your experience. This includes Camp Counselor Positions, random internships in other departments, and on-campus work as a Resident Advisor. 

Step 3: Connect with Speakers, Professors, and HR Managers

After you hear a person speak at your Internship, add them with a nice message about how you loved hearing them speak. This goes ditto with the HR Managers you meet at your internship. During the post-graduation job search, these people will be the best contacts you can possibly have! Professors are also good people to have as they open you up to new connections that wouldn't have accepted a request without a good number of mutual connections - similar to the Facebook friends system. 

On that note, don't add people you don't know or don't have any mutual connections with. LinkedIn shares a lot of personal information and you really don't want that out in the world. 



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© No Experience Required Maira Gall.