How To Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile To Accelerate Your Job Search

How To Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile To Accelerate Your Job Search
by Lauren McGoodwin
Photos Joe Kathrina | September 12, 2014

“I know I should be using LinkedIn to help me out with my job search, but I have no idea what recruiters are looking for or how to make my profile stand out. Any tips?”

- Meaghan, Pleasanton, CA

It’s a great idea to invest some time in polishing your LinkedIn profile.

Many companies use a tool called LinkedIn Recruiter so they can search for candidates via keywords, location, industry and a number of other parameters. With 250+ million users, you can see why recruiters use this tool A LOT. To stand out, you’ll want to make sure you’re maximizing your profile features, in particular: keywords, job titles and recommendations.


Include relevant keywords and phrases in the Summary section so that your profile will pop up when recruiters search for potential candidates. The Summary section is used to highlight your experience, and you can identify the appropriate keywords and phrases by looking at the job description of your targeted job and at the LinkedIn profiles of people who already have that job. Include the keywords and phrases in short, concise blocks of information to make it easy for recruiters to not only find you, but to understand your experience.


LinkedIn is built on connections. The more you have, the more your network grows! A larger network allows for more people to find you and therefore, to reach out to you. By listing all your previous jobs, internships, volunteer work and special projects, you will create more shared opportunities to connect.


The best way to build credibility and stand out to recruiters is through third-party recommendations. Ask for recommendations from professors, managers, colleagues and mentors. Collect a diverse list of recommendations—one for each job is great—to make your profile extra impressive.Don’t underestimate the power of these simple tasks! Having an updated, optimized LinkedIn profile can really give you a leg up in your job search.