Creating Your LinkedIn Profile

Heading:

  • Headshot
    • Including a headshot makes your profile 14 times more likely to be viewed by an employer.
    • Keep your headshot simple. You should be the only person in the photo, and you should be easily seen in it. Don't choose a photo in which you are far away or fuzzy. Make sure your dress and the content of the photo are professional. See THIS article for extra information about professional headshots.
    • The Career Development Center can take your free headshot photo for you. If you would like to take advantage of this, schedule an appointment with us.
  • Headline/Slogan
    • The default headline is your job title and company name. However, this can and should be edited, especially as a student.
    • Choose a headline that describes what you do in a broader context. Try to include key words for your industry to help employers identify you. Read THIS article for extra information.
  • Background Photo
    • Do not leave your background photo blank. Instead, choose a photo that coincides with a professional or academic experience or that is simple and attractive.

Background:

  • Summary
    • This should include information about what motivates you, what you're skilled at, and what's next for you professionally.
    • Show passion for your field and/or tell a story within your summary. Make it interesting to read, not just informative. Don't be overly formal or stiff.
    • Avoid fluff language and clichés.
    • Utilize multimedia. You can imbed two pieces of multimedia, including websites, blogs, presentations, documents, etc.
    • To learn more about writing a summary read THIS article.
  • Experience
    • This can include paid or unpaid positions.
    • Focus on your accomplishments within the positions.
    • Utilize multimedia. You can imbed two pieces of multimedia per position, including websites, blogs, presentations, documents, etc.
    • Don't feel a need to include all experiences. Choose the experiences that are most relevant and keep those on there.
    • If you are unemployed, include a "dummy" job entry in the current section that includes the job title you are targeting, followed by a phrase such as "in transition" or "seeking new opportunity". Many employers will do a search for candidates with a specific job and it will only find you if you are CURRENTLY in that job. This helps you get around that.

  • Skills
    • This section used to be called 'Endorsements'
    • You want to list at least 5 key skills
    • These skills should have keywords for your field listed. You can determine keywords by looking at the skills of other professionals in your field and/or looking at requirements on job descriptions.
    • You can reorder, hide, and delete skills in the section to meet your needs. Read THIS article to better understand how to do this.
    • You can determine if people will be prompted to endorse your skills or if you will be prompted to endorse other people's skills
    • Including skills on your profile makes you 13 times more likely to have your profile viewed.

  • Education
    • Include college but not high school.
    • Include your major(s), minor(s), GPA, international study, test scores, honors, and awards.
    • Including this section in your profile makes you 10 times more likely to have your profile viewed.
  • Connections
    • Use your existing network to create your LinkedIn network - look at facebook friends list, email address book, etc.
    • Send personalized LinkedIn requests to everyone in lieu of the standard LinkedIn request.
    • Tip: Request to connect through 'search' if you are unable to access a person's profile. Only do this if you are unable to access a person's profile. Connecting this way does not allow you to write a specialized message requesting the connection.

  • Groups
    • Use the GROUPS DIRECTORY to find groups to join.
    • Being active in groups makes you five times more likely to have your profile viewed.
    • Connect to the University of Arkansas Career Development Center group HERE.
  • Following
  • Recommendations
    • Recommendations are short letters of recommendation that are visible on your profile.
    • Ask managers, professors, classmates who have worked with you closely to write a recommendation for you and to add credibility to your profile.
    • Be strategic when you ask for recommendations. Diversity is good. Ask for recommendations from people who you have worked under, who you have worked on the same level with, and from people who you were in charge of.
    • Don't be afraid to cut a recommendation to make the stronger ones shine.
  • Miscellaneous
    • You can change the order of sections on your profile.
      • When you are in edit mode, hover your mouse over the double-sided arrow next to the 'Edit' link for each section. Click it, drag it, and drop it where you want to.
    • Fill out as much of your profile as possible. The more complete a profile is, the most likely it is to be viewed and the more likely you are to receive offers through LinkedIn.
    • Check your work! Lots of people are going to be looking at your profile, and it may be the first impression you make on people. Therefore, it is important that it is error free and that it is representative of you and your skills. Have friends or the Career Development Center staff look over your profile to check it just like you would for a resume.
    • Tailor your profile to your field. Emphasize keywords and tasks to help yourself stand out in a search. If you do not yet have a specific field in mind, emphasize professionalism and a desire to learn. Keep it general, and tailor it once you have an idea of what your interests are.
    • Be consistent in your message from top-to-bottom and across all posts. Who are you and what are you about? The answer should be evident.
    • Don't go overboard with all of the possible bells and whistles. If your profile is overwhelming to you or anyone else, you should tone it down.
    • If you speak multiple languages (conversationally or fluently), you should consider creating a LinkedIn profile in each language that you speak. Read THIS article for more information.
  • Additional sections
    • Organizations
    • Projects
    • Languages
    • Courses
    • Additional Information
    • Volunteer Experiences
    • Honors and Awards
    • Patents
    • Publications
    • Test Scores