5 essential tips to be contacted through Linkedin or Viadeo

Social recruiting has become an essential resource in the war for talent as competition becomes ferocious.

The annual Jobvite Social Recruiting Survey (the leading recruitment platform for the social Web) reveals that social recruiting has become an essential HR practice. Indeed, 92% of U.S. companies are using social networks and media to find talent in 2012, up from 78% five years ago. LinkedIn continues to be a dominant recruiting network, used by 93% of the people who responded (87% in 2011 and 78% in 2010)

Like hundreds of recruiters, at Dokker, we massively use social networks to identify profiles (especially freelances).

I would have loved  to say that it is perfect, but it isn’t. Although the search engines that are provided by the two main professional social networks, Linkedin and Viadeo, return excellent results, the overall quality of the profiles we visited was low, most of them lacking essential information about their owners .

Instead of coming up with yet another round of criticism, we chose, today, to give you 5 essential tips to ensure that you can be contacted by a customer or a recruiter.

1. Upload a picture of yourself (not an avatar or a cartoon hero)! A profile without a picture is less visible than others having one .

  • Upload a picture which is aligned with the job or industry you target (formal if you want to work in a traditional industry, more casual for a more creative industry).
  • Avoid holidays or diner pictures. As a reminder, you are not on Facebook.
  • Look towards the camera. We noticed during our research that people did put some pictures in which they are looking down (their eye sight is not visible), or on the side in an exaggerated way. When you look straight at the camera, you demonstrate an opened and frank attitude to potential recruiters.

2. Work on your summary (“About me” for Viadeo / “Summary” for Linkedin): It is the key part of your profile! Most of your profile visitors will only read this part! That’s why it needs to display essential information:

  • First of all, don’t make a copy-paste of your last cover letter. This style is off-putting. Rather choose a list of bullet points with your key skills.
  • Get to the point and give key figures and references. You used to work for a big company? Put it in the summary. You are bilingual? Add it straightaway. Don’t expect the visitors to dissect meticulously your experiences.
  • You are a freelance or self-employed? Mention it, as well as your availabilities!
  • You are looking for a post or your contract expires soon? Say it clearly!

As in in as a classic marketing strategy, your summary has to present a sales-orientated and factual history (story telling). It’s your showcase which can help you attract future customers or recruiters.

3. Provide your direct contact details. You are looking for a post or a new contract? Be reachable!

  • Don’t hesitate to add your phone number and your mail address in your summary. Do you believe recruiter love loosing time by sending you an internal mail? NO. They want to contact you immediately! Remember your frustration on some random shopping website where they have no contact  phone number? Would you like a recruiter to have this same frustration on your profile?
  • If you can relocate, say it in your summary. It is significant for a recruiter or a client to know that you can relocate in different geographic zones.

4. Choose a good professional title: mention the job title of the position you are seeking.

  • As in a traditional CV,  the title should be the job you are looking for. Don’t forget that the search engines are working with key words. Would you like a “web project manager” job? Put “Web Project Manager” in the title!

5. Add your references :

  • You have a blog, a twitter account which can reinforce your credibility in your professional sector? Insert it in your profile.
  • You are a student? Create a direct URL link to your senior thesis, your internship report or any other document that you produced, which can help you highlight your skills.
  • If you have an online portfolio, add it as well in your profile with the direct URL link. This way, prospects and recruiters can check your professional achievements upfront.

Social Networks are formidable means to attract potential customers and recruiters. That’s why, it is important to work on our own image. Don’t forget that “THE PRODUCT TO SELL ON SOCIAL NETWORKS IS YOU”.

www.dokker.com is an online service that allows Linkedin and Viadeo users to create a portfolio of their professional documents and to publish it on professional social networks.

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