By Priyanka Jaisinghani Staff Writer
Soon enough you are going to be wanting to spend a little less time on Facebook and Twitter and more on enhancing your LinkedIn. This will be yourNo. 1 tool to show employers everything you have done that can’t fit on a one-page resume. You can use this to your advantage, but you need to be doing the right things in order to maximize LinkedIn. You can very well apply to internships directly though LinkedIn, find prospective recruiters who have targeted you as an awesome candidate, and you can find companies that you want to work for. The question now remains — how do you make it all happen?
Your picture: Although this is a social media tool, this is not Facebook or Twitter. This is one of the first impressions an employer gets of you (whether you have applied through LinkedIn or not- they will find you on LinkedIn). You can’t have any selfies, any cropped pictures, or pictures with somebody else. Using a quality photo will only work wonders for you as it will maximize the number of people who view your profile and who get a good first impression. You need a good picture in a professional outfit, with your "I mean business but I have a fabulous personality" look. Chances are you are friends with at least one photography major or someone who knows how to use a good camera. Utilize your resources and make your picture shine by getting a good head shot (head, neck and shoulders).
Your Summary: Never leave this section blank. This is your gateway to providing who you are, what you want and what you have accomplished so far. You need this information to point recruiters and hiring managers in the right direction (a.k.a your direction). Write your summary in a way that describes you, and one of the many ways is to do it in a story format. Tell others your story — everyone likes a good story, and you can grab attention through this method. Start with the story, go on to what you have accomplished and bullet point your specializations.
Fill in the information: This is not a five-minute copy-and-paste job from your resume. This is a time-consuming task, as you should write in detail about your experiences, your projects, your volunteer experience and more. HR and recruiters use LinkedIn for candidate searching, but they do it by keywords. Use buzz words to make yourself stand out and write what you have done and what you have accomplished.
Personalize your LinkedIn page: Make your profile public and change your URL to make it more personal. It’s your page, and the URL doesn’t have to be a jumble of words and numbers. For example, instead of www.linkedin.com/5sd5fs5dfsdfs it can be www.linkedin.com/in/johndoe.