Common mistakes made on LinkedIn

It’s hard to believe, but people actually make mistakes using LinkedIn that could cost them a job. Despite the fact that the forum is entirely comprised of tools dedicated to making professional connections, some workers are managing to deter potential employers because of what is included or not included in their online profiles.

As a staffing professional seeking to fill a position for a client, you can’t have your job candidates linked to social networking profiles that feature glaring mistakes. Make sure to explore a candidate’s LinkedIn profile to ensure the individual has appropriately filled out the necessary information and leaves out embarrassing details. While a job candidate may care about linking to his or her daily horoscope, a potential employer is most likely less interested. Make a note of any mistakes found in a person’s LinkedIn profile using staffing software and potentially discuss making changes to improve a candidate’s chance of filling a position.

Here are four common LinkedIn mistakes:

1) Typos galore  

You’re perusing a potential job candidate’s profile and they have everything filled out and all of a sudden you realize something… the summary, job descriptions and other key tabs are riddled with typos. The sentences are also poorly constructed and have misspelled words. If a customer looking for a new hire were to check out this candidate’s profile he or she would immediately hit the “next” button and immediately discount the worker. Typos and poor grammar and spelling indicate a lack of attention to detail at the very least, and at worst, make a potential employer believe the individual is unintelligent.

2) Blank or inappropriate picture 

They say an image is worth a thousand words, well, a professional’s LinkedIn picture is just as chatty. According to Yahoo News, studies have shown that LinkedIn profiles with pictures are significantly more likely to get clicked on than those without. A profile pictures gives a personality behind the words and demonstrates a willingness to be seen. However, LinkedIn is a professional network, so any photo used should only include the individual candidate in question and not be an image taken from last year’s vacation or a party.

3) Empty summary and skills section

Is a candidate leaving the summary box empty? This is a big no-no. Employers read this section of the profile because it is the best indicator of what a worker wants to accomplish and where they are coming from. Unlike some of the other sections of the social network site, like previous work experience which can run like a resume, the summary portion requires focused concentration to fill out and is a bit more conversational.

“The summary is the most important part,” said Kim Brown, assistant director for Syracuse University’s Career Services department, according to Business Insider. “Having search terms and keywords in your summary that are related to the job you’re doing or want to do is going to make you more likely to be found by the recruiters and hiring managers who are searching LinkedIn for talent.”

Candidates who also leave the new skills section added to LinkedIn are failing to provide viewers the opportunity to quickly gain knowledge about their talents. A quick perusal of listed skills could be all it takes for a potential employer to determine whether or not the company wants to schedule an interview. In addition, the recent addition of peers and colleagues being able to endorse a specific skill shows critical professional credibility in the workplace.

4) Never sharing 

Part of the reason for the overall success of social media networks is the ability to easily share information, links, photos and video. Without this function, most of us would still be forwarding long email chains! A job candidate who uses his or her LinkedIn profile to share news or trends about the industry they are working in or trying to break into shows that they are trying to remain aware and informed – definitely an attractive quality.

These and other common LinkedIn mistakes can detract from a potential candidates attractiveness. A staffing professional may want to consider researching workers’ profiles before advancing them to the next stage of the recruitment process to ensure they are the right fit for a client.

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