When you graduate from university most people either jump right into the workforce, or travel for a while. Many wonder if they should take a gap year after university, but eventually you’ll start your career and then it’s the same thing day-in and day-out until you retire… right? Well the game is not over once you start your career, there is a “Facebook for professionals” out there and it’s called Linkedin.
What is Linkedin?
Linkedin is a network that allows anyone to post their resumes online along with their job experience and any other certifications they might have. Employers then look for potenial recruits by searching with certain parameters that they are looking to have in a new hire. They have a messaging system inside that allows the company to contact you and vice versa. You can also use Linkedin to find positions that are available. One nice feature I liked was it suggested positions that you might like based on your profile/credentials. You can also use the network to find friends by updating your email contact list. With the integrated friend finding tool it gives your Linkedin network a big boost.
Whats So Great About That? Monster and Workopolis Do That Already
Where Linkedin is a step ahead of the other job search engines is that it actually consists of a network. You can add your friends and see where they are in the industry, because a few years down the road, you might be surprised where they might end up. You can get recommendations for your profile from co-workers or even your boss, making it easier for your employer to find references. From there, the network spiderwebs out so you can see other friends co-workers and more importantly… they can see you.
How Do I Know If My Profile Is Getting Looked At?
Linkedin also has a feature where they allow you to look at people who have looked at your profile. When viewing your profile, you can also remain anonymous to maintain privacy. It’s kind of neat if you know when a company you like is looking at you though.
I Don’t Have A Real Job, Can I Still Use Linkedin?
YES! And it’s never too late to start. I recommend browsing a bit to find out how other people use it, and how they break down their resume and certifications. If you build up your network early, you will have an easier time finding a job once you’re done school. It’s a great way for people to refer their friends to jobs open in their company. I started up my account a few years ago, and I never really updated it until recently. About a week after I updated it I had two people contact me in regards to a position they have open. I don’t exactly have a jaw-dropping resume either.
So as you can see its a great way to keep in touch with other people in your industry. They say the average person changes jobs 6-8 times in their career. This makes things difficult to keep track of all the people you know. It’s also what makes Linkedin such a great tool to have at your disposal.
Oh ya, it’s free to sign up and use.