Jobs have become increasingly more competitive, and as students begin to prepare for their future one benefit of social networking in today’s fast-paced, social media crazed world is the value of LinkedIn.
LinkedIn is a professional networking site that is used as an online resume to market oneself. Young adults, established employees, employers and individual companies use this social media outlet. Connecting with other professionals and establishing relationships is fundamental in the corporate world.
“Students are using social media more than ever and LinkedIn is such an important tool in terms of promoting themselves and promoting their personal brand however I don’t think enough students are onboard with LinkedIn because they’re not aware of it,” said Kelly Mongelli, graduate assistant of the Cahill Development Center at Ramapo College.
If students are using social media more than ever how is it that they’re not aware of LinkedIn? The answer lies in the fact that students should become more business savvy in their way of thinking as they move towards graduation and begin their job search.
Facebook is a popular social networking site but it’s not honed in on business networking as LinkedIn is. If students haven’t already jumped on the ball with this they should be if they want a leg up on internships and entry-level positions. LinkedIn is a game changer for young adults looking to start their careers.
How It Works
According to Psychology Today, social media is now a part of our everyday lives just as much search engines are. When specifically looking for social media in the job search, LinkedIn is the most valuable tool for all professionals.
Psychology Today states that 80% of employers research online and their article gives helpful advice on how to make a complete profile that’s optimized and ready to be viewed for employers who are searching the internet for certain criteria.
“Make contacts on LinkedIn with everybody and anybody that you meet. Whether it’s personal friendships, family members, current coworkers or potential networking opportunities,” said Eileen Quaglino, Assistant Director of Career Planning at Ramapo College, “anybody that you meet is someone that you can potentially network with. It’s self-promotion and in terms of a career, any person that they make a contact with is really important,” added Quaglino
Psychology Today suggests excellent marketing skills like using a professional photo, including all previous employers so that former colleagues and coworkers can find you, making your profile public so it will appear in online search engines, asking colleagues or past employers to write recommendations for you and use keywords related to your profession.
It’s also important to focus on the introduction and use keywords that prospective employers will search for. LinkedIn uses strategic ways to connect with people so pay mind to the people you choose to connect with and accept.
“I used LinkedIn all the time for networking, I check it more than Facebook these days. There’s more of an interest from a professional perspective because I’ve gotten messages with job offers. It really does work,” said Carli Blau, 24, Columbia Graduate Student.
The world is turning online for mainly all their operations. It’s very imperative for young adults to take their focus from social networking on Facebook that could potentially hurt job opportunities to start thinking in terms of professional networking.
“The more students that begin to use LinkedIn, the more effort they exert into jumpstarting their careers,” said Morris Dweck, 22-year-old student at Rutgers University.