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How to Create a LinkedIn Profile That Stands Out To Employers 

When it comes to selling your value to a recruitment company like Clayton Recruitment and the clients we work for, there are a few pivotal documents required to draw attention to yourself. 

The humble CV is one, followed quickly by your LinkedIn profile. 

As LinkedIn is the biggest social business network outside China, with 850 million members listed, it is more crucial than ever to leverage the opportunities your LinkedIn profile provides as a positioning tool for your career. 

Your LinkedIn profile has many positive attributes. Unless you share a name with a well-known person, it is highly likely that your profile, if created properly, will appear on the first page of Google. 

Even though your CV/Resume is a standard document that demonstrates your career journey, a LinkedIn profile can deliver even more insight about you as a potential recruit in an interactive and engaging style that a CV alone cannot achieve. 

In today’s post, I want to share why your profile is so important and the easy, quick wins to ensure your LinkedIn profile stands out from the crowd. 

Headlines and Pronouns

Your headline is often the first piece of text a recruiter or potential hiring manager will see, so make it count. Paraphrase what you do, and the good news is LinkedIn now allows 220 characters, including spaces. Here is an example of a headline that works.  

“Marketing Manager at IKEM Solutions building B2B business and brand growth across the North West” 

With D.E.I. being on most workplace agendas, LinkedIn now allows you to add your preferred pronouns on your profile. The use of pronouns will let hiring managers, colleagues or online connections know how to address you to prevent any misconceptions.  

A Professional Photo

LinkedIn produces numerous reports that demonstrate the power of imagery and media on your profile. Profiles with a professional photograph can get 14 times more profile views vs those with selfie style images or group pictures. 

Phone technology today means there is no excuse not to have a professional LinkedIn profile picture. Ask a colleague or friend to take a photograph with their smartphone in good lighting where you shoulders and face are visible to give an honest and accurate perception of who you are professionally. 

Head and shoulders are the best shots. Your face, preferably smiling in appropriate business attire, makes the best impact. Remember, recruitment consultants viewing your profile are imagining how you will fit into their client’s organisation, so this is an easy way to make an impact.  

How To Get In Contact

As a first start, do you have all your contact details visible?  

Make sure you have a mobile number and a Gmail/Hotmail address that is your most active and professional email account. Try to avoid the likes of 90sbaby@hotmail.com or something with your birth year in as this can indicate age bias subconsciously.  

A professional url demonstrates your attention to detail, for instance, LinkedIn.com/in/Andy Gold as opposed to LinkedIn.com/in/Andy-Gold-2671c567. 

It’s also important to include links to your blog where you share knowledge related to your sector which is a great feature a lot of LinkedIn users forget to utilise.  

Featured Section

Have you written papers or presented at an industry conference, or recorded any work-related videos?  

If the answer is yes, add them here, and this will certainly make you stand out from the crowd and gives recruiters or potential businesses the chance to see more of what you can do rather than just reading it on a CV. 

Your About Section

Please do not add only your essential skills or paste sections from your CV into your summary section. Use it to catch people’s attention as you share relevant information about who you are and your skills and abilities; you have 2000 characters, so make them count. 

In this section, talk about the value you will add to an organisation alongside your skillset. Be different and stand out by explaining how you might help a potential new employer solve their problems while being genuine and authentic. 

Our experience as recruiters is this attracts our attention, plus it makes it easier for us to ‘sell’ the fact you are a ‘must see’ candidate for our client and pick out your best attributes towards their needs. 

Here are some examples from LinkedIn themselves as to what they see as great profile summaries. 

Add to Profile and Open To

On the right-hand side of your profile, you will see a button that says ‘add to profile’. When you click this, it reveals all the additional sections you can add to your profile.  

From featured items to licenses and certifications, and courses and recommendations the list is endless to really boost your profile against your competitors.  

If you are open to work and currently not employed, you can add this to your profile picture by clicking the relevant button. This lets recruiters know instantly without even clicking on your profile that you are a potential candidate for their client and therefor you are most likely to be seen.  

In the ‘add your profile’ section under background, share details of all your work experience that will communicate your capability. Then list all your education and volunteer activities. Today, organisations have an active CSR programme that they love to promote to new starters; therefore, this area is essential to share too should you have experience in those departments. 

Under accomplishments, you can list publications, certifications, patents, courses, projects, honours and awards, test scores, languages and how you are involved with communities that are important to you. 

This makes it easy for a recruitment organisation to identify your skills and expertise as a potential match for their client. 

The big question is, does your profile: 

  • Help your standout? 
  • Communicate your value, including providing supporting evidence? 
  • List your work achievements? 

Share Useful Content

Depending on your current organisation and their social presence, you can share and like content until your heart is content. This unconsciously communicates to everyone how connected you are and what is important to you. When someone arrives on your profile, it is one of the first sections they can see. 

You can now share an article or even upload a compelling image or create a video on your LinkedIn profile. All of which enable you to communicate your personal brand and show recruiters areas of your work you are particularly interested in the most. 

List The Skills You Know Are Important in Your Industry

When it comes to skills, you can add up to 50, which could help you stand out to a recruitment consultant and your future employer. You don’t have to add all of them as only your top ten will be profiled, so make these the most important. 

The UK is in the grip of a skills shortage. Therefore, if you know you have in-demand skills, communicate them on your profile wherever you can. You would be surprised that this is an area often forgotten by even the best of candidates. 

Endorsements and Recommendations

We all now live and work in the review society. Social proof is a significant influencer in our current community. Who has not viewed Trip Advisor before booking a restaurant or holiday with their significant other? It is the same in the business world. 

Therefore, collecting recommendations and endorsements is crucial for your career. If you have not got any, ask for them from your contacts. All too often, people are shy about asking for validations of their work. The good news, which might surprise you, is that many people are more than willing to give you a recommendation as long as you offer to give one back in return. 

Finally, Complete Your Profile in Full

A question for you? Are you using all the features we have mentioned? 

Do you have a presentation or video on your summary? Have you got a link to a paper you have written? 

It is interesting the impression people get from reading a full LinkedIn profile. It sends a message to recruitment companies that you are a person with attention to detail and take their career and work-life seriously – a great candidate for their clients.  

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Posted By

Lynn Sedgwick

Managing Director

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Your Career Checklist

When was the last time you sat down and reviewed to what extent you are meeting your career objectives?

And I don’t mean your annual review with your line manager; I’m talking about your deeply personal career goals and intentions.

Wherever you are in your career journey, it is a good idea to periodically analyse your current position depending on where you want to be. When you dig a little deeper, is everything on track and working out as you expected? Or do you need to make some changes in order to meet your goals?

To help you measure if your career is progressing as you envisaged when you started out, we have created the following checklist to provide you with a snapshot of whether you’re on the right track.

When you work through this checklist, it is essential to remember the reasons you got into your current role in the first place.

What did you set out to achieve in your career – did you plan on making a certain amount of money in a specific timeframe?

Was your move into your current role related to what was going on in your personal life? For example, were you about to leave home, get married or were you saving for a deposit for a house?

And also, what is important to you about the company you work for? Do you fit in with your company’s culture? Do you have a good working relationship with your colleagues and managers?

If your current role or company is not fulfilling you in the way you had hoped, or if the pace has slowed down recently, it could be a sign that you need to start making some big career decisions – is it time to move organisations?

Read each statement below and decide on how much you agree, using the following scale –

1 – Strongly disagree

2 – Disagree

3 – Neutral

4 – Agree

5 – Strongly agree

So, let’s get started!

Career Checklist

1. I am progressing the way I want in my career.

2. I have achieved some of my career goals, and others are within reach.

3. I enjoy my work and look forward to going in each day.

4. The people I work with are very supportive and friendly.

5. I feel like a valued member of the team I work within.

6. My manager gives me the right balance between support/guidance and working under my initiative.

7. I feel I make a difference within the company I work for, rather than just being a number.

8. The company I work for really invests in supporting me to achieve my goals.

9. I can see a clear progression path within my current company.

10. I am happy with the level of training and personal development offered by my current employer.

11. The company I work for believes in me and trusts me to do my job well.

12. I feel that my company enables and supports my focus.

13. I am recognised and rewarded for my work.

14. The sector I work in really interests me.

15. I am happy with the location of and commute to my place of work.

16. I feel my company offer a fair and competitive commission structure (if applicable).

17. The monetary remuneration I receive has enabled me to achieve goals in my personal life (i.e. buy a house, go on my dream holiday, etc.)

18. I feel I have the right work/life balance working for my current company.

19. I am happy with the way my working day is structured.

20. I can see myself staying with this company for a long time.

What Did You Score?

Tally up what you scored and take a look below at some of the points you may want to consider when thinking about how you want your career to progress in the future:

 

20-40

Alarm Bells! This score says your career isn’t going to plan, and you are probably not enjoying your current role. We suggest thinking about why you aren’t enjoying your position or not achieving what you want. It might be time for you to move on or think about whether your current company or role is for you. Do you need a more supportive environment, better career progression, or even a change of sector?

 

41-60

Room for More A better score, which suggests you enjoy aspects of your job, but there’s lots of room for improvement. For example, you might like the people you work with, but you feel you aren’t personally getting the support you need to achieve your career and personal goals. You need to consider if you can see changes happening in your current company by speaking to your manager, or if you feel working here has run its course and to progress, you need to move on.

 

61-80

Meeting Some Goals You’re neither very happy nor unhappy, though you wouldn’t describe yourself as completely engaged. Which means that if the right opportunity came your way, you would consider it. When you feel this way, sometimes the grass isn’t always greener on the other side. You need to decide if you want to move, why is this? Understand if it’s just a case of you only feel like this when you have a bad day or if it’s more often.

81+

Loving Life and Your Job You are achieving your goals, meeting targets and enjoy the place you work. There may be small elements that you feel could be better, but they aren’t big enough to make you think about working somewhere else. However, we suggest you don’t become complacent. Sometimes, being in a company for too long can demotivate you in the long run. If you’ve been working with the same company for a while, is it time for a fresh challenge with new people?

 

If this checklist has prompted you to think harder about what your current role and company are providing you with, and it has made you realise that now is time for a change, then get in touch with Clayton Recruitment today. We can help you in deciding what step to take next to further your career.

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Posted By

Lynn Sedgwick

Managing Director

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Factors to consider before deciding to move jobs

  • April 30, 2018

Looking for a new job is a big commitment. It takes time to figure out what is out there and how that fits with your career plans. Then there are the applications, interviews and time spent investigating your options. The decision to move is not taken lightly, so if you do decide to seek a new role you want to feel reassured that it’s the best fit for you. Our blog offers some important considerations about seeking a new role to help you establish what matters to you.

Monetary motivation

Cold hard cash is a major motivation factor when candidates consider a job move. The temptation of earning more money for the same job with a different company can prove too tempting to resist.

It’s also worth noting that in the business world, career progression and pay scales can be much more fluid than in professions that have a clear linear structure with regards to training, qualification and experience, such as doctors or legal professionals. If money is high on your list of priorities it’s often best to look at what the individual company is offering, as pay can vary within a sector dependent on the business.

The North-South divide is often talked about in the media; it’s true that there are broad discrepancies between take-home earnings dependent on where in the country you live and work. The Institute of Fiscal Studies published findings last year that state incomes in the South East of England are up to 25% greater than incomes in the West Midlands. If moving plays a part in your job search, the pull of big cities like London is often a major factor. It’s worth bearing in mind how location fits into your broader lifestyle desires when thinking about changing jobs.

Non-monetary rewards

Money can be a powerful reason to leave a job, yet non-monetary rewards can be just as motivational. Things such as contributions towards a gym membership, flexible or remote working, or discounted medical cover for the employee plus dependents and a spouse can be sufficiently tempting if you’re considering a move.
Personal perks offered by a company are often major considerations for many candidates. While London offers a fast pace of life and a vast array of career opportunities, different locations may appeal to people in different circumstances. A quieter location might be preferable for parents with children, while a job close to extended family might suit someone who helps care for a relative. Money can be tempting but personal circumstances are often a more powerful motivational force – and will likely continue to be so as our population ages and younger generations play a part in caring for elderly relations. Finding a business that supports flexible working or considers part-time hours can be invaluable and might just be the tipping point that pushes someone to jump ship.

Time, work and people management

Management issues are often cited when candidates are looking for a new job. Important issues to think about include:

  • How workloads are managed in the business: is there enough to do – or too much?
  • Time management: are employer expectations realistic? Does the job involve long, late hours?
  • Opportunities to gain managerial experience: if training is not forthcoming and managing a team is something you’re interested in, it could be time to move on.
  • Management of the business as a whole: if you’re at a stage in your career where you’re ready to take the next step and you want to influence how the company is run, look for senior or director-level positions. If these aren’t available, it’s time to move on.

Job titles and moving up

Career development isn’t always linear, but if you feel that your real-life responsibilities don’t match your job description you could be ready for a step up. If your employer isn’t forthcoming with dropping the ‘assistant’ from your managerial job title, and you have the necessary skills and experience, why not see what else is out there. Tread carefully though – some employers won’t hire a senior colleague without evidence of previous experience or time in a post, and it’s never a good idea to burn bridges with your current employer.

Stay or go: your own list of reasons

There are many factors that influence the decision to stay with or leave a business. Sometimes a large issue such as the salary that a company can offer feels too big to work around and can only be resolved by a move. Equally, smaller issues that combine to make a larger picture can be just as compelling in the decision to seek a new position.

The most important factors to consider when looking for a new job are the ones that matter to you. Whether that’s money, work/life balance, a comprehensive benefits package or proximity to family, only you can decide. Think carefully about what’s on offer in your current job and weigh that against what a different company or role can offer – and how that sits with what you want.

If you found this blog interesting, why not have a look at our other post on How can you tell if a job is right for you? Or if you’re looking for that perfect role, then check out all the vacancies we have available, and please do register your CV with us.

You may also like to download our guide on How to Develop Your CV.

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The rise of Social Media Jobs

  • January 11, 2017

Ten years ago only a few of us were getting to grips with the early versions of Facebook and had only just discovered the ability to peer into the private lives of people we’d previously only counted as acquaintances. It certainly wasn’t expected that just a decade later you would be hard pressed to find an organisation, or even many individuals, who don’t have some presence on social media in one way or another.

Roles in social media

Tweets, likes, pokes (remember them?) pulse blogs, pinning and regramming were all just glimmers in Mark Zuckerberg and the likes’ eyes and the idea of having a job solely dedicated to something called social media was obviously unheard of. However, things have changed significantly now and social media has not only expanded into people’s personal lives, but also their working ones in many cases. Social media management roles are now commonplace at the majority of organisations, particularly larger ones and thousands of professionals now work in roles related to the field.

We spoke to the Lancashire Evening Post on this very subject last year with our Recruitment Manager, Tracy Bolan outlining some key pointers about working in social media.

“The average starting salary for Social Media Executives is around £18,000 but pay can easily rise to £35,000 and up for Social Media Managers.”

Career paths into social media

And because the field is so new, there are no established paths into a social media role.

“It’s a relatively new concept and new platforms are constantly emerging, so any firm solely looking for employees with marketing degrees is likely to be fishing in a shallow pool. You can gain a lot of valuable experience by using platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram both personally and professionally and having a ‘relevant’ degree certainly isn’t a steadfast requirement.”

However, social media careers aren’t just about following your favourite celebrities and liking your friend’s tweets, you’re in charge of an entire organisations’ online profile and that can be a considerable responsibility. Dozens of companies have embarrassed themselves by not having properly aligned social media communications and this can do considerable harm. At the same time, social media can also present significant opportunities to make a business look good and in touch with its customers or clients. An organisation that replies quickly to its followers when something has gone wrong, for example, is more likely to be seen as responsive and engaged than one which responds sporadically while also posting updates. The latter approach can leave a customer feeling dissatisfied and would probably make them question using the organisation again, while the former is likely to build more of a connection with the firm.

Social media roles are becoming increasingly common, however it’s a big responsibility and you can also expect to be asked to report regularly on engagement, follower numbers and just about every metric you can imagine. If you’re looking for a role in social media, get in touch with our specialist team.

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